Song of the final meeting

How helplessly chilled was my chest, yet

My footsteps were nimble and light.

I unconsciously put on my left hand

The glove that belonged on my right.

It seemed that the stairs were endless,

But I knew - there were only three!

Autumn, whispering through the maples,

Pleaded: “Die here with me!

I was blindly deceived by my dreary,

Dismal, changeable Fate.” “And I too,”

I responded, “My darling, my dear one,

And I’ll also die here with you.”

This is the song of the final meeting.

I looked up at your house, - all dark inside.

Just the bedroom candles burned with a fleeting,

Indifferent and yellowish light.
Anna Akhmatova
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You want to know how this came to be

…You want to know how this came to be? -

In the dining room, the clock struck three,

Holding the banister timidly,

While saying goodbye, she said listlessly:

“That is it… No, there is more, you see.

I love you. I loved you wholeheartedly

Even back then, no less!” –

“Yes”?!...
Anna Akhmatova
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The door ajar

The door ajar, the sudden

Sweet scents of limes close up…

The glove and whip, forgotten,

Lie on the tabletop.

The oval of the lamp aglow…

I’m listening, intent.

Why did you have to go?

I do not understand…

Tomorrow morning surely will

Be jubilant and nice,

And life is simply gorgeous still,

My heart, you must be wise.

Exhausted and worn out bare,

You beat so faintly, gasping…

You know, I’ve read somewhere

That souls are everlasting.
Anna Akhmatova
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High in the sky

High in the sky, the cloud grew grayer,

Like a stretched out squirrel pelt.

“I don’t care,” he said, “Snow Maiden,

That in March your frame will melt.”

My hands grew cold in the downy muff.

I felt scared, confused and wary.

How to bring back the weeks of his love

That passed, so transient and airy!

I want no vengeance or bitter grief,

Let me die with the blizzard’s last blitz.

I cast fortunes about him on Epiphany Eve.

In January, I was still his.
Anna Akhmatova
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In the heart, memory of the sun

In the heart, the memory of the sun fades,

Yellower turns the grass.

The wind disperses the early flakes

Barely, with each pass.

In narrow channels, water won’t flow –

Cooling, stands still.

Here, nothing will ever happen, I know, -

It never will!

The transparent fan of the willow unfolds

In the empty blue,

Perhaps, it’s best that I’m not, after all,

Married to you.

In the heart, the memory of the sun fades.

What, is everything glum?

Yes, perhaps!... As the night pervades,

Winter will come.
Anna Akhmatova
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Hands wrought under the dark veil

Hands wrought under the dark veil…

“What is it that makes you so pale and faint?”

- I’m afraid that I made him drunk with the ale

Of bitter anguish and torturous pain.

Could I forget it? He stumbled out, wavering,

His tormented mouth was twisted and grim....

I ran down the stairs, not touching the railing,

At the end of the walkway, I caught up to him.

I yelled after him: “I was kidding and only.

If you leave me today, I will die.”

He turned back and smiled, so unbearably calmly,

“Don’t stand in the wind,” he replied.
Anna Akhmatova
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Love conquers...

Love conquers, deceitful and slow,

With a soft amateurish refrain.

So strange to think – not long ago

You weren’t dejected and gray.

In the garden, at home, in the field,

Whenever she flashed her smile,

Wherever you were, you believed

You were free and out in the wild.

Once taken by her, you glowed

And you drank her poisons, content.

Because all the stars seemed to grow,

And fields had a different scent,

Autumn fields.
Anna Akhmatova
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The boy there, on the bagpipes playing

The boy there, on the bagpipes playing,

The girl, who weaves herself a wreath,

Two forest paths that cross while straying,

The fire in the fields beneath -

I see it all. I witness it and stow

Deep in my heart, affectionately gentle.

There’s one thing only that I never know

And cannot even tenuously remember.

I do not ask for wisdom or for might.

Only a bit of fire’s warmth! I’m cold!

Winged or wingless, in the day or night,

The merry god won’t visit me at all.
Anna Akhmatova
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In Tsarskoe Selo (ep.3)

A swarthy youth once wandered here,

By the shores of the lake he sighed,

And for a century now we revere

A barely audible rustling stride.

Pine needles’ dense and bristly mat

Covers the stumps of the trees…

Here lay his old three-cornered hat

And a worn, tattered book by Parny.
Anna Akhmatova
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In Tsarskoe Selo (ep.2)

…And there my double made of marble

Lies by the ancient maple tree,

His face onto the lake imparted,

He hears the rustling greenery.

Bright showers wash in a cascade

The clotted wound upon his torso…

O, cold one, white one, only wait

And I will turn to marble also.
Anna Akhmatova
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