Czeslaw Milosz Poems
Human reason is beautiful and invincible.
No bars, no barbed wire, no pulping of books,
No sentence of banishment can prevail against it.
It establishes the universal ideas in language,
And guides our hand so we write Truth and Justice
With capital letters, lie and oppression with small.
It puts what should be above things as they are,
Is an enemy of despair and a friend of hope.
It does not know Jew from Greek or slave from master,
Giving us the estate of the world to manage.
It saves austere and transparent phrases
From the filthy discord of tortured ...
Study Of Loneliness
A guardian of long-distance conduits in the desert?
A one-man crew of a fortress in the sand?
Whoever he was. At dawn he saw furrowed mountains
The color of ashes, above the melting darkness,
Saturated with violet, breaking into fluid rouge,
Till they stood, immense, in the orange light.
Day after day. And, before he noticed, year after year.
For whom, he thought, that splendor? For me alone?
Yet it will be here long after I perish.