Verse > Anthologies > Deutsch and Yarmolinsky, comps. > Modern Russian Poetry
Deutsch and Yarmolinsky, comps.  Modern Russian Poetry.  1921.
“Still Was the Evening”
By Victor Hofman (1882–1911)
STILL was the evening of the ball,
The summer ball, with dancers wending
Where ancient linden shadows fall
Upon the river steeply bending;
Where in the trees the breezes breathe        5
And willows droop like drowsy dreamers;
Where it seemed beautiful to wreathe
The lanterns and the colored streamers.
A languorous waltz of slow retreatings,
A waltz that singing hardly sounded;        10
And many faces, many meetings,
Soft clouds like women’s shoulders rounded.
The river looked a sculptured stream,
Serenely the whole heaven holding,—
A fluent and enchanted dream        15
Of joyous miracles unfolding.
A crimson mantle, golden-bright,
Upon the clouds the sun was flinging;
The dream-swept waltz was drowned in light,
And calling through the dusk and singing.        20
A languorous waltz beside the river,
And many meetings, many faces,
And near cheeks’ warmth, and lovely quiver
Where eyelash with curved eyelash laces.

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