Verses Outloud

What makes a poet? His success? His literary style? The fact that his poems make it into the world of music? The voice of a singer? All of the above? How is it that some poems, whether read or sang are unforgettable, while the others, albeit good ones, stay with you just for a little while?

Dance me to the end of love is one of my favorite songs by Leonard Cohen. It feels so profound, especially to anyone that had this rare and precious gift of love in their hands once, and lost it due to the death of the one they loved. I am not sure what makes this song a classic, maybe it’s a combination of Leonard’s magical voice, the eternal topic of the poem, or my own feelings. Don’t care, and don’t tell me you don’t like it.

After listening to a song like this, how can any of us dare to write a verse in hope that it will find the way to the heart of even one person? Yet we try, and we try again. Not because we want to impress, I believe, but because sometimes, your body just needs to release this energy that screams to get out. Positive or negative, this energy is something that pushes you to go on, to try and say something from your heart or mind that just cannot lay dormant within you.

If I write something, it is usually in English. Little bits like:

From dirty, smelly West to rich and snobby East

I walk your streets in disbelief

Is this the place that names itself

The center of the world?

This is a tribute to Manhattan, where I work amazed every day at the contrasts of this city.

Very rarely, my psyche pushes my mother-tongue to come out of the closet. And then, with tears streaming down my face, I write this:

Мне снова хочется уйти

На всё закрыв глаза

Туда, совсем за горизонт,

Где спит твоя слеза

Где голос твой меня зовет

Где вечность манит нас

И лишь одно страшит меня

Ты ждёшь-ль меня сейчас?


Всё прошло, отгорели печали

И безумные ночи без сна

Всё прошло

Журавли откричали

И уже не вернётся весна.

И без боли, надежды и веры

Я бреду наугад без мечты

Снится мне только город любимый

В этом городе Xрам. И в нём ты.


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