Boris Pasternak

The spring-it had simply been you

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The spring-it had simply been you,
And so, to a certain extent,
The summer; but autumn-this scandalous blue
Of wallpaper? Rubbish and felt?

They lead an old horse to the knacker's yard.
His wistful, short-breathing nostrils
Are listening: wet camomile and moss,
Or maybe a whiff of horsemeat.

Imbibe with your lips and the blaze of your eyes
The transparent days' tear-stained vagueness,
Like the drift of an empty bottle of scent,
Its nostalgic lingering fragrance.

To sleep, not to argue. Despairingly
To sleep. Not to open the window
Where last summer, in frenzy, July
Was burning and glowing like jasper,
And melting the glass, and was pairing

The same crimson dragonflies,
Which now, on their nuptial beds,
Are deader and more transparent
Than crumbled dry cigarettes.

How sleepy and chilly are windows
In the twilight hours of frost.
Dry vitriol oil. At the bottom,
A gnat, and expired wasps.

How draughty the north is. How ruffled
And sulky... O whirlwind, drive,
Feel, search all the crannies and hollows,
Find me my song alive!

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Boris Pasternak