Saturday Poem

The Correct Approach

The ancients spoke well:
briefly – but well.
Their thoughts had little wings –
like Hermes’s –
the ancients were not concerned
that someone might misunderstand –
everyone understood them.
But if one’s mind were weak,
he will quietly become intimate with
a Muse, one of the nine.
And the Muse,
inclining her head gracefully,
will teach him.
She will teach him to continue to stay
silent and silent and silent.
And if she permits him to speak
he will have to speak in hexameters.

by Regina Derieva
Post Road Magazine, Issue 38
translation from Russian by Katie Farris and Ilya Kaminsky