One might suppose that I shall not forget you,
but that won't be because I loved you so,
rather because you chanced to be the fire
which I myself employed to hew my soul.
by Анна Семёновна Присманова (Anna Semyonovna Prismanova)
a.k.a. Анна Симоновна Присман (Anna Simonovna Prisman)
(late 1930s or early 1940s?)
translated by Robert Chandler
Interesting info: She is considered comparable to her contemporary, the American poet, Louise Bogan and challenged traditional ideas of femininity in her poetry as seen in this closing stanza of the poem Granite
The unrepeatable voice won’t speak again,
Died yesterday and quit us, the talker with groves.
Or into gentlest rain of which he sang.
And all the flowers that grew only in this world
Came into bloom to meet his death.
And straightway it’s grown quiet on the planet
That bears a name so modest… Earth.
by Анна Ахматова (Anna Akhmatova)
from Седьмая книга (The Seventh Book)
translation by D. M. Thomas
Fun fact: The poem refers to the death of Boris Pasternak (29 January 1890 – 30 May 1960).
A man with no roots is lost
like the darkness in the forest.
Heart, my heart, what red voices cry
centuries of suffering in my flowing hands?
Love lasts as long as there are
two people, however silent the word.
Love, my love, how may I meet your eyes,
how may I meet the eyes that I will close?
Future, my future, on whose arms
will my hands be planted?
Love, my love, be assured your eyes
will live after you like children.
by Dannie Abse
from Early Poems
There is deep meaning in a parting:
fleeting love, eternal love –
love’s but a dream, a dream’s but a moment…
Today, tomorrow – awakening is imminent.
And you wake up, at last.
by Фёдор Иванович Тютчев (Fyodor Ivanovich Tyutchev)
translated by Irina Mashinski
Fun Fact: Counted amongst the admirers of Tyutchev‘s works were Dostoevsky and Tolstoy along with Nekrasov and Fet then later Osip Mandelstam who, in a passage approved by Shalamov, believed that a Russian poet should not have copy of Tyutchev in his personal library – he should know all of Tyutchev off by heart.
The sky is torn across
This ragged anniversary of two
Who moved from three years in tune
Down the long walk of their vows.
Now their love lies a loss
And Love and his patients roar on a chain;
From every true or crater
Carrying cloud, Death strikes their house.
Too late in the wrong rain
They come together whom their love parted:
The windows pour into their heart
And the doors burn in their brain.
by Dylan Thomas
The different first version published in January 1941 was prompted by his third wedding anniversary.