Requiem - Epilogue



There I learned how faces fall apart,

How fear looks out from under the eyelids,

How deep are the hieroglyphics

Cut by suffering on people’s cheeks.

There I learned how silver can inherit

The black, the ash-blond, overnight,

The smiles that faded from the poor in spirit,

Terror’s dry coughing sound.

And I pray not only for myself,

But also for all those who stood there

In bitter cold, or in the July heat,

Under that red blind prison-wall.

Anna Akhmatova