Editors Note: We're blogging through We Didn't Start the Fire by Billy Joel.
Boris Pasternak was born on the 10th of February, 1890. He was a Russian poet, novelist and literary translator. Boris Pasternak’s most famous novel was titled ‘Doctor Zhivago’.
One of my favorite poems that Pasternak wrote is ‘Winter Sky’.
Ice-chips plucked whole from the smoke,
the past week’s stars all frozen in flight,
Head over heels the skater’s club goes,
clinking its rink with the peal of night.
Step slow, slower, slow-er, skater,
pride carving its trace as you race by.
each turn’s a constellation cut there,
scratched by a skate in Norway’s sky.
The air is fettered in frozen iron.
Oh, skaters! There – it’s all the same,
that, like snake’s eyes set in ivory,
night’s on earth, a domino game:
that moon, a numb hound’s tongue
is there, frozen tight: that mouths like
the forgers of coins’ – are stung,
filled with lava of breathtaking ice.
Pasternak said, of his writing, “I come here to speak poetry. It will always be in the grass. It will also be necessary to bend down to hear it. It will always be too simple to be discussed in assemblies.” I have already found this to be true in my writing.
Boris Pasternak died on May 30, 1960, at the age of 70.