Alexandr Blok

One snowy night I was smiled upon by Russian gods
          & found myself at dinner opposite

The Moscow scholars a married couple—he only
          the world’s authority on Pasternak

& she the final word on her beloved Alexandr Blok
          & as we talked the evening gathered 

Along the length of the white table & I could only keep
          drinking the conversation in so deeply

I felt myself reaching back into the dark century & at last
          I got up to leave in my black cashmere

Overcoat I’d found hanging on the back rack of a Venice
          thrift store & became just another shadow

About to slide wordlessly into the night & yes it’s true
          it was snowing just in upstate New York
Not Moscow or St. Petersburg nor in any ancient page 
          yet to anyone who saw me walking

I imagined myself as the most lyrical shadow alive


Copyright © 2016 David St. John. Used with permission of the author. 

About this Poem

“This poem recounts a dinner that became one of the most enjoyable evenings of my life after having been unexpectedly introduced to the two remarkable Russians scholars the poem introduces. Also, it allows me to indulge my love of and to celebrate the famously untranslatable poet of the Silver Age, Alexandr Blok.”
—David St. John