Translated Poem: A Selection from Pushkin’s “Autumn”

Alexander Pushkin - Autumn

Okay, so, whatever our differences may be, Alexander Pushkin and I have at least this one thing in common: our favorite season is fall. That is, осень, or osen’, in Russian. Let Tyutchev have his spring … what’s not to love about the leaves turning gold, red, and orange — the air turning crisp and … Read more…

Lermontov Translated Goethe, And I Can’t Not Share It

YES, FOLKS, I am very-geekily-excited to have discovered that Mikhail Lermontov — the Russian Romantic poet who wrote A Hero of Our Time — composed a free translation of J. W. von Goethe‘s famous short poem “Wandrers Nachtlied II” (aka “Über allen Gipfeln…”)! (Anyone who has taken formal German classes should recognize that!) Goethe’s poem has left … Read more…

A Poem for the Season of Exaltation: Zhukovsky’s “The Lark”

A Poem for the Season of Exaltation: Vasily Zhukovsky's "The Lark"

I confess I’m not much into spring poetry. The idea that spring is the season of poets is a super-cliché, and in my case, it’s not all that accurate. For me, fall and winter are the poetic seasons. They’re the times of introspection and reflection — of turning inward. Spring and summer are the seasons … Read more…

Audio Poem: Rainer Maria Rilke’s “Neighbor God”

In a small red purse in my bag, I keep a prayer card of the Holy Face. I’ve carried it with me for over a year now. Whenever I look at it, it pulls me down out of vanity, into the earth, into the darkness of the tomb where Christ’s body awaits the dawn and the rolling … Read more…

Need Strength for the Winter? Read This Russian Poem. (Writing Prompt Included.)

Photo by Pawel Kadysz

Forget “Winter is Coming.” In Novosibirsk, it’s here. The golden leaves that made this past month so gorgeous have peaked and fallen, and street cleaners have already raked them up into sacks and hauled them away. On Wednesday we had our first snow. Granted, it’s not a real Siberian winter yet — we still have … Read more…