Boris Pasternak (10 February 1890 - 30 May 1960 / Moscow)
When, having finished, I shall move my armchair,
The page will gasp, awakened from the strain.
Delirious, she is half asleep at present,
Obedient to suspense and to the rain.
The heaviness of burnt-out ships has numbed her,
Prostrated, weighted down her senseless form;
You cannot dupe this one by false pretences-
It is the poet who will keep her warm.
I told her at an hour (its secret shudder
Vouchsafed by fancy) when the winter will
Light up green screeching ice, fed up with waiting
Behind an office worker's window sill,
And clocks in banks and other public places,
While drinking in the snow and outside's dark,
Will suddenly jump up and strike-their faces
Crossed by the clockhands at the 'seven' mark-
At such a deep, at such a fateful hour,
I made the page wake up and take her chance,
To put on hood and scarf, and venture out to
Descendants, strangers, shaking off her trance.
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