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Vyacheslav Ivanovich Ivanov

Poets Of Spirit

The snow is clothed in dawn
In the high desert,
We are oaths of Eternity
In the azure of Beauty.

We are splashes of scarlet foam
On the pallor of the seas.
Renounce your earthly chains
To sit among the kings!

Don't imagine we are dissolving in the sky,
Cut off from the earth: -
A holy path leads
Beyond the clouds into dreams.

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The Russian Mind

Willful and avid mind,-
The Russian mind is dangerous as flame:
So unrestrainable, so clear,
A happy and a gloomy mind.

Like the steady hand of a compass
It sees the pole through swells and fog;
It leads the timid will
From distracted dreams to life.

Like an eagle gazing through the mist
To survey the valley's dust
It soberly contemplates the earth,
Floating in a mystic night.

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Love

We are two trunks ignited by lightning
Two flames in the midnight forest;
We are two meteors flying in the night,
The double-stinging arrow of a single fate!

We are two horses whose reins are held
By the same hand, - bitten by one spur;
We are two eyes of a single gaze,
Two trembling wings of one dream.

We are a pair of shadows grieving
Over the holy marble grave,
Where ancient Beauty slumbers.

The two-voiced mouth of secrets shared,
We two make a single Sphinx.
The two arms of a single cross.

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The Vineyard Of Dionysus

Dionysus walks his vineyard, his beloved;
Two women in dark clothing - two vintagers - follow him.
Dionysus tells the two mournful guards - The vintagers:
"Take your sharp knife, my vintners, Grief and Torment;
Harvest, Grief and Torment, my beloved grapes!
Gather the blood of scarlet bunches, the tears of my golden clusters -
Take the victim of bliss to the whetstone of grief,
The purple of suffering to the whetstone of bliss;
Pour the fervent liquid of scarlet delights into my ardent Grail!"

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Heaven Above, Heaven Below

Night opens wide the burning Macrocosm,-
And heaven's hierarchies come into view
Lo, the spirit sings, and the elements dance
Interwoven with snaky locks of starlight.

And the Microcosm grows distinct in the deep night:
We hear the roar of elements spinning inside us,-
And behold our own hierarchical assemblage
From close stars to dim-eyed spots of light.

There is a milky way in the soul as in the heavens;
There is a multitude in both of these creations:
The same word is stamped in both of these books -

And twin scales measure the same weight.
There is a He in the flames of depths revealed;
There is an I in the deepest miracles.

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Clothed In Beauty

As if chiseled, a fruit-laden branch
Hangs in my garden, asleep - so low...
The trees sleep - and dream? - in moonlight;
And the mystery of their life is near, near...

Even if we cannot grasp it,
The mute language is still intelligible:
They use our beauty to express
How we are one amidst rays and spots of light.

And the tremor of any life's creation
Reveals itself in a lovely form;
And the variance of different things is sweetened
By shared beauty. Multiply it!

And the world will be like this unstirring garden,
Where everything heeds a harmonious silence:
Both stem and flower yield to the dear Earth;
Both flower and stem listen to the Moon.

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