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Osip Mandelshtam

Osip Mandelshtam

"The Falling Is the Constant..."

The falling is the constant mate of fear,
And feel of emptiness is the feel of fright.
Who throws us the stones from the height --
And stones here refuse the dust to bear?

Once, striding in a monk’s unbending mode,
You pierced the yard from rim to other rim;
The cobble-stones and the coarse dream --
Have thirst for death and sadness of the broad-

Let Gothic shelter be in ruins turned
Where ceiling serves as a deceptive fable,
And in the heath the gaily logs don’t burn!

A few here for eternity were born;
But  if your mind has only instant label
Your lot is awful and your home unstable!


Translated by Yevgeny Bonver October, 1994
Edited by Dmitry Karshtedt, October, 1997

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