Humble Home. But Rum, And Charcoal...
Humble home. But rum, and charcoal
by Boris Pasternak
Grog of sketches on the wall,
And the cell becomes a mansion,
And the garret is a hall.
No more waves of housecoats: questions,
Even footsteps disappear;
Glassy mica fills the latticed
Work-encompassed vault of air.
Voice, commanding as a levy,
Does not leave a thing immune,
Smelting, fusing… In his gullet
Flows the tin of molten spoons.
What is fame for him, and glory,
Name, position in the world,
When the sudden breath of fusion
Blends his words into the Word?
He will burn for it his chattels,
Friendship, reason, daily round.
On his desk-a glass, unfinished,
World forgotten, clock unwound.
Clustered stanzas change like seething
Wax at fortune-telling times.
He will bless the sleeping children
With the steam of molten rhymes.