In the uplifted forehead, a winged
suggestion. But the coat looks awkward.
There's a hideout of pure impulse
in closed eyes, an arm's repose.

Here is one who floats and chants -
his word become ductile flame
in order to overcome inborn
clumsiness with innate rhythm.

- Osip Mandelstam (1931).
(provisional trans. by yrs truly)

(M. wrote some variations on this, in a series of little poems addressed to a goldfinch - kind of a personal emblem.)

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