Yevgeny Yevtushenko – Waiting

Originally posted February, 2012:

My love will come
will fling open her arms and fold me in them,
will understand my fears, observe my changes.
In from the pouring dark, from the pitch night
without stopping to bang the taxi door
she’ll run upstairs through the decaying porch
burning with love and love’s happiness,
she’ll run dripping upstairs, she won’t knock,
will take my head in her hands,
and when she drops her overcoat on a chair,
it will slide to the floor in a blue heap.

[from Selected Poems, Penguin Modern European Poets, 1962]

Of course I’ve got the bug now, right up there, and I’m revisiting the old reading grounds. It’s wonderful.

With Yevtushenko, it was a choice between this poem and Lies with the following opening that had an obvious appeal for a teenager’s sense of being wronged by anyone and everyone older,

Lying to the young is wrong.
Proving to them that lies are true is wrong.
Telling them that God’s in his heaven
and all’s well with the world is wrong….

But I went for Waiting because I was as romantic as radical in my poetic moods in the 70s and I love the simple rushing narrative of this immediate poem.


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