Osip Emilevich Mandelstam

(1891 - 1938 / Warsaw)

Osip Emilevich Mandelstam Poems

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Best Poem of Osip Emilevich Mandelstam

What Shall I Do With This Body They Gave Me

What shall I do with this body they gave me,
so much my own, so intimate with me?

For being alive, for the joy of calm breath,
tell me, who should I bless?

I am the flower, and the gardener as well,
and am not solitary, in earth’s cell.

My living warmth, exhaled, you can see,
on the clear glass of eternity.

A pattern set down,
until now, unknown.

Breath ...

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This

This is what I most want
unpursued, alone
to reach beyond the light
that I am furthest from.

And for you to shine there-
no other happiness-
and learn, from starlight,
what its fire might suggest.

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