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Books in Red Binding
by
Marina Ivanovna Tsvetaeva


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From heaven of a childhood life
A farewell to me you're sending,
The ever-loyal dear friends
Within a red worn down binding.
On learning homework from school,
At once I ran to see you yet.
'It's late'  'Please, Mother, ten more lines'
But happily she did forget.
The fires flicker in a lamp . . .
How nice it is to read at home!
To sounds of Greeg, Schumann and Kui
I learned about the fate of Tom.
It's dark . . . the air is growing cold..
Tom's full of faith in Becky's joy.
Within the darkness of the cave
Wanders with torch Indian Joe . . .
A cemetery . . . owl is screaming . . .
(I'm scared) And now through hassocks flies
The punctilious widow's foster-child,
Like in a barrel Diogenes.
Lighter than Sun is the throne hall,
Over the graceful boya crown..
At oncea beggar! God! He said:
'Forgive, I'm heir to the throne.'
To darkness comes, who comes from her.
Sad is the destiny of Britain . . .
O, wherefore not amid red books
Not to go back to sleep again
Before a lamp? O golden times
Where sight is braver, heart is purer:
O golden times, I say again:
Huck Finn, Tom Sawyer, Prince and Beggar! 
 
This book is in the public domain.
Purchase a framed print of this poem.

Marina Ivanovna Tsvetaeva  (1892 –1941) was a Russian poet, playwright, and journalist born into an artistic, affluent family.  As a child, she traveled extensively with her family, was well educated and, though her mother wanted her  to follow in her footsteps as a concert pianist, Marina declared herself a poet early on and self-published her first collection  at the age of 18. Well received, it was the beginning of a writing career which brought acclaim and respect but not much money. Marina’s entire adult life was spent in poverty and her tragic life, which included numerous affairs, losing a daughter to starvation, the imprisonment of another daughter and the execution of her  husband for espionage activity,  ended in suicide. Despite her sad life, her poetry is often beautiful and  uplifting and has frequently been set to music.


New comments are closed for now.
Paulafranceschi:
Mark Twain illuminated my young reader's heart as well.
Posted 04/17/2013 03:05 PM
Dorcas:
A wonderful reminder that good literature, is that, and from any ethnicity's reflection. I am happy to see this poem.
Posted 04/16/2013 08:18 AM
TheSilverOne:
A reminder of old friends. I read Tom Sawyer twelve times in my childhood.
Posted 04/16/2013 06:50 AM


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