I don’t believe in omens. Nor do I fear
the premonitions.
Neither smear nor poison scares me.
No thing like death exists on planet Earth.
Immortal’s every man. And every thing is too.
No point in fearing death at seventeen,
Or seventy.
There’s Matter and the Light,
Neither death, nor darkness, are of a real matter.
We’re all already at the seashore;
And I am one of those who hauls the nets
When a shoal of immortality floats through the wavy crest.

If you live in a house — the house will stand.
I’ll summon any of the centuries,
Then enter one and build a mansion there
That’s why your children and your wives
Sit here with me at this feast, —
The table is the same for ancestor and grandson:
The future is being accomplished now, so when I raise my hand,
five fingers form the perfect stave,
that sheds the light throughout the future
and the past.

I used my collar bones as timber planks
to hold the Time.
I measured it with geodetic chains
And marched across it, as through the mountains of Ural.

I tailored every Age to fit me.
We marched to the South, raised the dust above the steppe;
The tall weeds fumed, and gloomy as a monk, touching the horse-shoes with it’s moustache,
proclaiming doom to me, grasshopper danced.

I strapped my fate to the saddle of my horse instead;
And even now, as centuries go by,
I stand up in the stirrups like a child.

I’m satisfied with my own immortal nature,
My blood is here to flow from age to age.
Yet for a warm and square place I’d call my home
I’d willingly have given all the sea foam,
If only flying spindle of my life
would not have tugged me, like a thread, around the globe
from Age to Age.

Arseniy Tarkowsky,
(translation by Chtivo.org, 2021
Photographer — unknown.)