Lot's Wife

Inspired by the poem "Lotova žena" by Anna Achmatova

One evening he says: „We must depart“,

and you look into his calm and distant eyes,

and you listen to the calm, decisive words

knowing nothing of the sadness of good-byes...

„Our city is hollow and rotten,

it is stained by indulgence and pride.

It is doomed to be lost and forgotten

and will meet its fate this very night.

But I am the one to be spared by the Lord,

the Righteous one who shall survive.

So let’s follow the angels to where we are bound

and let’s never look back, my wife.“

He has two angels to lead him, two angels and a God ahead.

For you there never was an angel, and for you,

good-byes are simply sad.

So you gather the few things you want to keep,

precious trinkets made of beauty and of sin,

and then you spill them out again and try not to weep,

for the truly precious things you bear within.

And you stride across the courtyard of your youth,

through the streets that saw your children grow

following your husband full of enigmatic truth,

while you’re empty but for all those held-back tears

getting more bitter and heavy

the longer you go.

He has two angels to lead him, to a new home magnificent and far.

For you the angels are but strangers, and your home

is where your memories are.

Then there’s nothing but desert before you,

and a dark reddish glow in the rear,

something’s burning there back in the distance

so remote and still awfully near...

And your daughters staring blindly far ahead,

you wonder if they hear the fading cries,

or if, relying on the words their father said

they’ve grown impassive to the sadness of good-byes.

Softly you call them with a mother’s voice,

but they’re striding on obediently and fast,

and surely there’s some kind of greatness in their choice,

and the truly precious things are lost at last.

And you turn around to look at the city,

still so precious and sinful and great,

full of memories that shall be forgotten

by those who will not share its fate.

And you give in to the tears that went unshed,

to the burden of the sadness in your heart,

let yourself be filled with salt and weight instead

of a bitter and unbearable depart.

He has two angels to lead him, to a place where he will never die

For you there never was an angel...

Crystal 04/2007

Printer-Friendly Version