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Anna Akhmatova

Russian Poet

1889-1966


SELECTED POEMS

Narrated by Victoria Gordon

Download mp3 file: Selected Poems

This file is 3.8 MB; running time is 8 minutes
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The mysterious spring...

The mysterious spring was still enjoying itself,
About the mountains the revealing wind was wandering,
And the deep blue lake was being blue—
The temple of the Baptist not by hands made.

You were frightened by our first meeting,
But I was praying for a second one,
And again tonight there is a hot evening...
And the sunset so low above the mountain.

You are not with me, but it is not farewell:
And every moment is triumphant news for me.
I know that there is such an anguish in you,
That you cannot utter a word.

In every day...

In every day there is such
A murky and irksome hour.
I speak loudly to melancholy,
Not having opened my sleepy eyes.
And it pulsates like blood,
Like the sigh of warmth,
Like happy love,
Smart and evil.

There is an utter mark...

There is an utter mark in the people's nearness,
Which can't be crossed by love and passion,—
But in the striking silence lips become one
And the heart is torn apart by love.

And here friendship is helpless,
And the mountain of high and flaming happiness,
When the soul is free and estranged
From the slow calm of sweet passion

.

In striving for it they become insane,
And those attaining it are annihilated by grief...
And now you understand why
My heart doesn't beat under your hand.

Wild honey the scent of freedom has ...

Wild honey the scent of freedom has,
Dust—the sunshine beam,
Violet—the mouth of a girl,
And gold—has nothing.

Minionette, the scent of water
And love—the apple.
But forever we learnt,
That blood has but the scent of blood.

Slowly does the river...

Slowly does the river along the valley flow,
A house there is on the hill, of many windows.
And here we'll live like in Catherine's times:
Attend the services and greet the crops.
Having endured a two day parting,
Coming is he, a guest, along the golden wheatfield.
And in the sitting room kissing the granny's hand
And on the steep staircase my lips.

Like a white stone in the depth...

Like a white stone in the depth of a well,
There is one memory lying in me.
I don't want to fight:
It's a joy and a suffering.

It seems to me, that the one who looks
Closer into my eyes, will see it at once.
It will become sadder and more pensive
For the one receiving the scornful story.

I know the gods turn people
Into objects, not having killed their consciousness.
You have turned into my remembrance,
Forever to make glorious sorrows live.

Song of the Last Meeting

My breast grew helplessly cold,
But my steps were light.
I pulled the glove from my left hand
Mistakenly onto my right.
It seemed there were so many steps,
But I knew there were only three!
Amidst the maples an autumn whisper
Pleaded: "Die with me!
I'm led astray by evil
Fate, so black and so untrue."
I answered: "I, too, dear one!
I, too, will die with you..."
This is a song of the final meeting.
I glanced at the house's dark frame.
Only bedroom candles burning
With an indifferent yellow flame.

The memory of the sun is weakening...

The memory of the sun is weakening in my heart.
Turns yellow the grass.
The wind blows the early snowflakes
Lightly, lightly.

In the narrow channels there is no flow—
Water freezes.
Nothing will ever happen here,—
Oh, never!

In the empty sky the willow has been thrown
A wind transparent.
Maybe it's for the better that I haven't become
Your wife.

The memory of the sun is weakening in the heart.
What is it? Darkness?
Maybe!...Within a night may come
Winter.

The Guest

Everything is as it used to be: there is fine sharp snow
Hitting at the windows of the dining room,
And I myself haven't become new,
But a man came to me.

I asked: " What do you want?"
He said, "To be with you in hell."
I laughed: " You'll predict us both, possibly, bad luck."

But having raised his withered hand,
He lightly touched the flowers.
"Tell me how they kiss you,
Tell me how you kiss."

And the eyes watching blankly,
Didn't move from my ring.
Not a muscle moved
In his serenely angry face.

Oh, I know his joy—
To know hard and passionately,
That he doesn't need anything from me,
That I have nothing that I can refuse him

.

In the hours at the table...

In the hours at the table.
An impossibly white page.
The mimosa smells of Nice and warmth.
A large bird flies in the moonlight's path.

And making your braid tight for the night,
As if you would need braids tomorrow,
Through the window I'm looking, sad no more,
At the sea, the sandy slopes.

What power does a man have,
Who doesn't ask for tenderness!
My tired eyes I cannot raise,
When my name he calls.

On the Road

The land though not mine,
But forever in my memory,
And in the sea,
Tender icy and unsalted water.

On the bottom the sand is whiter than chalk,
And the air is drunk, like wine,
And the rosy body of the pine trees
Is naked at the sunset hour.

And the sunset itself in the waves of ether
Is such that cannot say
If it's the day's end, the world's end,
If it's mysteries mystery within me.

More information about Anna Akhmatova from Wikipedia




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