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The joy of that black night
is still alive
and pulsing in me.
That joy is also to drive me on
towards the white nights
that I am dreaming to show you
one spring
when we land in Saint Petersburg.
I’d take you to the silver-and-blue
Maryinsky Theater
to feel the walls
that witnessed the flights of Pavlova, Kschessinskaya,
A little dream that can become a memory,
a souvenir,
a reality,
almost a miracle.
Dreaming is like rehearsing –
it brings you one step forward
to perfection,
to a raising bridge
near by which
can trace the fleeting happiness.
That black night,
(in my private hierarchy of nights!),
I place among those I spent
watching the first snow
in the deep thick autumn
of Nizhny Novgorod.
This joy of first snowflakes
covering the mustard maples
and of that sudden black spring night
have something of the feelings
a tight-ropewalker must know –
sure that he will reach the far side,
yet invigorated
with the possibility of danger
(always a gamble,
a Russian roulette,
to survive the winter).
On that black night
you were my white St.Petersburg:
severe, austere, impersonal
and at the same time
unbearably beautiful and absorbing,
a city and a person
which and who
could subtly
resonate one’s moods:
nostalgy, melancholy,
of being
versus becoming,
the joy of sunrays playing on the dome
of St. Isaac’s Cathedral..
I surrendered to you that black night
with the same passion and enthusiasm
as when I was a child
capitulating to the first snowfall.
Now, I need to build up good firm muscles
to be able to walk you
over 342
one white night
in St.Petersburg.