WINTER IS OVER
"I've studied the art of farewell,"
specialized in exile.
I've learnt how a boat puts out from port.
Learnt the bitterness of a train whistle.
For years I lived on letters, lived
on smuggled tobacco, banned
publications. I've not forgotten a thing.
In the icy loneliness of the steppes
the sails at sea were what I missed the most.
There were no mountains, no mountains:
I leant back on the winds.
Was I out of my mind? A prisoner, say,
in the heart of darkness?
The blood dried -
and I was a rose, blown into flower.
Translated by Michael HULSE