Osip Emilevich Mandelstam
Osip Emilevich Mandelstam Poems
What Shall I Do With This Body They Gave Me
What shall I do with this body they gave me,
so much my own, so intimate with me?
For being alive, for the joy of calm breath,
tell me, who should I bless?
I am the flower, and the gardener as well,
and am not solitary, in earth’s cell.
My living warmth, exhaled, you can see,
on the clear glass of eternity.
A pattern set down,
until now, unknown.
Take From My Palms
Just for joy, take from my palms
A little sun, a little honey,
As Persephone's bees commanded.
An unfastened boat cannot be untied.
A shade shod in fur cannot be heard.
In the dense forest of life fear cannot be overcome.
Only kisses are left for us.