Walk along the beach

Live without pretenses, live
So that, finally,
You draw towards yourself the love
Of space, hear the future.*

One should walk along the beach
and see winter spacing itself between
people, but don’t fill in the gaps. Leave them
to chance and feel the sand between your toes,
sinking into soft ambiguity. Others may find your
path, step inside, perhaps, but keep to yours,
seaweed on one side and the tide, inching
closer, on the other until your paths
converge (it won’t retreat or apologise)
and your feet are fully submerged.
Your footprints will disappear without trace
and, finally, you can say I live.
I may walk this beach again, but, until then,
I live in the margins of time and place.


*Boris Pasternak, “To be famous isn’t decent”  Translation by Bob Perelman and Kathy Lewis in Glad and Weissbort (1978),Russian Poetry: The Modern Period

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