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Czeslaw Milosz

(30 June 1911 – 14 August 2004 / Kedainiai)

A Task


In fear and trembling, I think I would fulfill my life
Only if I brought myself to make a public confession
Revealing a sham, my own and of my epoch:
We were permitted to shriek in the tongue of dwarfs and
demons
But pure and generous words were forbidden
Under so stiff a penalty that whoever dared to pronounce one
Considered himself as a lost man.

Submitted: Monday, January 13, 2003

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