A poem by Osip Mandelstam
A speck of insanity?
Life’s knot, where we’re known and tied
and untied into existence.
So honest spider-beams spinning
cathedrals of super-life crystals
onto ribs, gather them again
to a single bunch.
Grateful bundles of clean lines,
all collected by thin beams,
gathering together, sometime,
like guests with open faces.
But only here on earth, not in the sky,
like in a house filled with music –
just don’t frighten them, don’t wound them – please –
let us live to see that, let us live to see.
Forgive me this as I say it,
read it back to me, quietly, quietly.
(Voronezh, 15 March 1937)