The history of my stupidity would fill many volumes.
Some would be devoted to acting against consciousness,
Like the flight of a moth which, had it known,
Would have tended nevertheless toward the candle's flame.
Others would deal with ways to silence anxiety,
The little whisper which, though it is a warning, is ignored.
I would deal separately with satisfaction and pride,
The time when I was among their adherents
Who strut victoriously, unsuspecting.
But all of them would have one subject, desire,
If only my own -- but no, not at all; alas,
I was driven because I wanted to be like others.
I was afraid of what was wild and indecent in me.
The history of my stupidity will not be written.
For one thing, it's late. And the truth is laborious.
Trans. Robert Hass and Robert Pinsky
Czeslaw Milosz's Other Poems
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Comments about this poem (Account by Czeslaw Milosz )
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(28 November 1757 – 12 August 1827)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
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(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
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(6 August 1809 – 6 October 1892)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
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