#ReadIntl2020 Adult Books Lifespan of a Reader Poetry Poetry Friday Reading Themes

[Poetry Friday] Akhmatova’s Romance

Poetry by Russian Poet Anna Akhmatova.

Myra here.

Thank you to Elizabeth Steinglass for hosting this week.

The Complete Poems Of Anna Akhmatova (Amazon | Book Depository)

Translated by: Judith Hemschemeyer Edited and Introduced by Roberta Reeder
Published by Zephyr Press (2000)
ISBN: 0939010275 (ISBN13: 9780939010271). Book was gifted to me. Book photos taken by me and edited using an iPhone app.

I learned about the Russian poet, Anna Akhmatova through another poetry collection that I own: A Book of Women Poets From Antiquity to Now: Selections from the World Over edited by Aliki Barnstone and Willis Barnstone (Amazon | Book Depository):

My worse-for-wear, battered, much-loved copy of the book.

And so for my birthday last March, my husband got me the definitive collection of Akhmatova’s poetry. It is a chunkster, and a product of more than a decade of work by the translator who has committed her life’s work to Akhmatova. Some of the poems are somewhat obscure, and will require historical and personal context for deeper understanding and appreciation – a few have even been censored in Russia.

However, I did find a few that I thought would be great to share with you all for Poetry Friday. Both poems reflect longing, grief, and the inevitability of parting: bleak but true.

Which of these two poems spoke to you more? Are you familiar with Akhmatova’s poetry?

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3 comments on “[Poetry Friday] Akhmatova’s Romance

  1. Liz Steinglass

    Wow. I really like the rapid shifts between formal language and big abstractions and “It just happened anyway.”

    Liked by 1 person

  2. These are heartbreaking, Myra. I like the second one better…more relatable and accessible, I guess. I did not know this poet–thanks for the introduction!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. These are beautiful poems, the language that imparts a sense of utter loss and loneliness. “Why do you pine as if yesterday/ We parted” I found this interesting and sad. I guess I prefer the images in the second maybe because they seem more accessible. The last poppy, the gates are tightly closed, the evening is black. There is much emotion here.

    Liked by 1 person

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