Abraham Sutzkever

(1913 - 2010 / Smorgon, Russian Empire)

To A Tiger


Suddenly we saw each other. Time vanished.
You guarded the gates of paradise.
Above you, two cascades —
Streaming wings.

Brother! My gaze of weighty lead
You melted in your fiery mildness.
Cowardice played a trick on me —
Did not let your lips taste me.

Instead of lying dumb in the ground —
My blood would have gushed in a tiger!

Too late. Separated from you
By ten thousand miles.
Back to the eerie word, unsated scars.

And though we both are free — we walk behind bars.

Submitted: Monday, July 21, 2014

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