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Thursday
Oct202016

Pasternak, "Во всем мне хочется дойти"

A work ("In everything I want to grasp") by the Russian poet more immediately associated with this famous novel.  The original of the poem is here.

In everything I want to grasp
The essence underneath the nerve;
In work and on my chosen path
The languor that my heartstrings serve.

The essence of the days long past,
What are their purpose and design?
Which principles, which roots will last,
What core within the ball of twine?

And all the while to hold this string
Of life’s events and sundry fates:
To live, to love, to feel, to think,
To enter new and uncrossed gates.

If I could but elucidate
My passion whole or just in part;
Then I’d describe in lines of eight,
What sparks reside within my heart.

Outlaws and sins would be my stars,
Pursuits and flights their lone resort;
And happenstance beguiled by scars
Would hasten palms and elbows forth.

Its law I would uncover bare
And show its source, its wellspring pure;
Its name I would repeat and wear
Upon my sleeve and soul demure.

And verse would grow in gardens mine,
A quiv’ring vein in every patch;
And there would bloom a linden line
Of single file and common back.

This verse would bear a rosy scent
And breaths of mint, and meadowed gaps;
And hay and sedge would too be lent
To scenes beneath my thunder claps.

So did Chopin infuse his staves
With wondrous life in greenest green;
Etudes of parks, of groves, of graves,
Estates which lived behind his sheen.

Both pain and joyous play arise
In all victories achieved;
A bowstring taut before our eyes,
Released in triumph unretrieved. 

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