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Osip Mandelstam by Mary Ann Reilly

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We Live, Not Feeling

- Osip Mandelstam

We live, not feeling the country beneath us,
Our speech inaudible ten steps away,
But where they’re up to half a conversation -
They’ll speak of the Kremlin mountain man.

His thick fingers are fat like worms,
And his words certain as pound weights.
His cockroach whiskers laugh,
And the top of his boots glisten.

And all around his rabble of thick-skinned leaders,
He plays through services of half-people.
Some whistle, some meow, some snivel,
He alone merely caterwauls and prods.

Like horseshoes he forges decree after decree-
Some get it in the forehead, some in the brow,
some in the groin, and some in the eye.
Whatever the execution – it’s a raspberry to him
And his Georgian chest is broad.

I like to make things, especially mistakes. Please visit my blog where I display lots of art as well. Between the By-Road and the Main Road

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  • Carol Knudsen
    Carol Knudsenalmost 3 years ago

    Wow! Beautiful work and verse! :) x

  • Thank you Carol.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • andreisky
    andreiskyalmost 3 years ago

    wonderful portrait of a great poet; do you know his Insomnia. Homer. Taut sails. ? one of my favorite verse

  • I had read it—an earlier poem. The last stanza steals the breath:
    I drink the roiled air like a dark water.
    Time has been plowed; the rose was earth. In a slow
    whirlpool the heavy tender roses,
    rose heaviness, rose tenderness, are plaited in double wreaths.

    Thanks for adding the link.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • Carrie Jackson
    Carrie Jacksonalmost 3 years ago

    Really beautiful and cool! Great sense of style! I love the rawness of the barbed wire, tempered with the poetic beauty of the words. Very nice. ;)

  • Thanks again Carrie. Appreciate you taking time to look & comment. I wanted to capture some of the transformation of the poet as he lived in Russia and the under Stalin.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • Carrie Jackson
    Carrie Jacksonalmost 3 years ago

    Wow…nice…that makes it even more powerful! Excellent Mary Ann!

  • tinypaws
    tinypawsalmost 3 years ago

    Great work!!

  • Thanks

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • © Kira Bodensted
    © Kira Bodenstedalmost 3 years ago


    Please click the banner to comment on your permanent Feature page

  • Kira thank you so much.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • artisandelimage
    artisandelimagealmost 3 years ago

    bravo !
    my best, your host (francis).

  • Francis, appreciative, Thanks.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • linaji
    linajialmost 3 years ago

    genre: Digital Art
    March 2012

  • Thank you. Just looked at the other works and am so honored to have a work selected. Thank you Lina:)

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • flyrod
    flyrodalmost 3 years ago
    So well done. Love the use of type.
  • Thanks. His work inspires.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

  • linaji
  • Thanks. Did do and left a comment there. Again thank you.

    – Mary Ann Reilly

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