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Osip Mandelshtam

Osip Mandelshtam

"I Often Shiver With Cold"

I often shiver with cold --
I want to be mute as a thing!
There is, in the skies, dancing gold
Sending me commands to sing!

Singer, be sad and upset,
Love, and remember, and call,
Catch, from a dark planet sent,
Light and magnificent ball.

That’s a true link, I believe,
With the mysterious worlds!
What an oppressive grief,
What a misfortune holds!

What if that star, as a pin,
Suddenly’ll pierce my heart?
That one, which shimmering spins
Over the shop apart?


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

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