Pasternak Time: “The five minute phonecall took no time”
The five minute phonecall took no time
For such a famous phonecall. Yes, comrade.
They have talked about it ever since,
A lifetime of conjecture. What was the tone?
Lives hung in the balance on the weight
Of a single sentence. It’s not poetry.
A lesser writer would stumble with words
Or make false claims. Not Pasternak.
He learnt dialectic in the days of glory
When his parents wowed Moscow. The Pasternaks.
The Georgian psychopath knew all that
But he had a mission. Vendetta.
Lifetimes fill with connected incidents
To break the receiver. Friendships founder.
And time hangs heavy in her two books
Who lived to remember her call. Silent decades writing.
Where all roads lead to the five minute phonecall,
One name traded against another. Hang up! Now!
For what is Mandelstam, tell me again,
What kind of damn fool name is that? Mandelstam.
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