by Joseph Brodsky
In a cold time, in a place more accustomed
To scorching heat, to flat plains than to hills,
A child was born in a cave to save the world.
And it stormed, as only winter’s desert can.
Everything seemed huge to him: his mother’s breast
The yellow steam of the camels’ breath, the Magi,
Balthazar, Caspar, Melchior, their gifts, carried here.
He was all of him just a dot. And the dot was a star.
Attentively and fixedly, through the sparse white clouds
Upon the recumbent child, on the manger, from afar,
From the depths of the universe, from its very end,
A star watched over the cave. And that was the father’s gaze.
From Paysage s navodneniem (Landscape with Flood)
Tr. L. Shmailo
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