English poetry

Poems in English


EIGHT EPITAPHS

I.

You liked your scrolls? — Here they are.
The manuscript of your book? — Here it is.
Your wine and figs? — Here they are.
The portrait of your wife? — Here it is.
Your garden and your house? — Here they are.
The box you never opened? — Here it is.

You are all here, this is all of you.
Your soul would have nothing to add.

II.

Before I went, I had a dream.
The messenger squeezed through
From the other world.
It was painful to look at him,
But he was in pain, too.
His flesh pressed him hard.

He groaned: “You shouldn’t go now.
Child, the time has not come yet.
You should stay and know
This leaden light.”

Stranger, reading these lines,
How could I play and grow
Where an angel wriggles and cries?

III.

If you love me, she asked,
Jump down from the rock.
I did, and Eros preserved
Me alive. Yet I froze like a dog
In the sea, and soon died.

I am in the cold eternity,
And love I never will –
Thanatos rescued me
From a greater chill.

IV.

My son loved music
And I put near him a flute
Wrapped in a strip of silk,
To keep the dirt from it.

When the winds don’t blow,
At the end of day,
I believe I know
That I hear him play.

V.

Her mother wanted her so badly
That she would pester me
Almost every night, pounding doggedly
On the door, weeping under the fig tree.

I knew that sooner or later
I would have to let her go.
When she fell ill last winter,
I knew at once what I know.

VI.

Come to me holding the blades of grass,
Come to me at once.
Enter my room in your silken dress,
Give me a caress.

The whole planet is pressing you now.
I know how
Desperately you want to come
From your crowded home.

VII.

If I wanted to hug you, I would have
To hug both the day and the night,
The mountain on the left,
And the waterfall on the right.

I would have to retain you
Once and for all.
Here, between the mountain
And the waterfall.

VIII.

I am sitting at the table,
Writing my own epitaph.
The parchment is pressed
By a piece of marble.
There is wine, a peach cut in half.

Shall I say that I was blessed
With a long life, for I loved the mist
In the mountains, the bird in the nest
More than my soul,
Which was creeping low?
That the peach is whole?

The dead would already know,
And the living would not listen.

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (1 votes, average: 5.00 out of 5)

Poem EIGHT EPITAPHS - Vladislav Nekliaev