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CENSURE

You understand: in distress I fall,
praying, Dear God, for death.
For I have learned pain by heart,
repeated on Tver’s mournful earth.

A crane sits on a worn-down well;
above him, boiling with foam, the clouds.
A gate creaks, and over this forlorn land:
the scent of grain and grief.

And these dull distances
where even the voice of the wind is lost,
but not the censure on the faces
of calm and sunburnt peasant wives.

(Anna Akhmatova)

 

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