April is Poetry month…

this poem is from KnopfDoubleday Poem a Day 2010  

A Remedy for Insomnia

Not sheep coming down the hills,
not cracks on the ceiling—
count the ones you loved,
the former tenants of dreams
who would keep you awake,
once meant the world to you,
rocked you in their arms,
those who loved you . . .
You will fall asleep, by dawn, in tears.

by Vera Pavlova

This poem is #66 in the hundred poems that make up If There Is Something To Desire, the first collection in English by the stunning Russian poet Vera Pavlova—stunning because of what she can do in under ten lines, sometimes under five. Her work is translated by her husband, Steven Seymour. Pavlova rarely titles her poems—this one is an exception—and her book is the first in the history of Knopf’s poetry list to show an entire poem on the front jacket. 


About dearrosie

We think we need so much, when all we really need is time to breathe. Come walk with me, put one foot in front of the other, and get to know yourself. Please click the link to my blog - below - and leave me a comment. I love visitors.
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4 Responses to April is Poetry month…

  1. met a poet at a clean-tech event last night, a room filled with do-gooders talking about green energy. ‘why is a poet here?’ people asked him. ‘someone needs to capture the moment’ he replied. ‘someone needs to remind us what’s important,’ i thought, ‘even in the midst of all this, we get lost.’

  2. Lovely, lovely!!!
    It reminds me of those Writer’s Almanac by Garrison Keillor on NPR — just hearing him talk about writers and read a poem makes me feel like I took a 2 hour yoga class — and no downward dog!! Thanks for this beautiful moment…

  3. I love shorter poems and I’ve never heard of Vera Pavlova before – thanks for the introduction, Rosie!

    • dearrosie says:

      I’m so glad you stumbled upon this poem Barbara because it needs a bigger audience than I had in the very beginning. I’m also glad that I could introduce you to a poet you didn’t know.

      It’s unbelievably hard to translate poetry and I wonder whether anything of the original Russian flavor is lost in the translations?

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