The Scale By Which You Measure Me: Poems 1913-1917

The Scale By Which You Measure Me: Poems 1913-1917

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Author: Marina Tsvetaeva

Translator: Christopher Whyte

Publisher: Shearsman Books (2024)

From 1912 to 1920 Marina Tsvetaeva wrote copiously but published no books. Later she would claim that at least three major collections had fallen by the wayside in those years. The poems translated here offer readers the flavour of those vanished books, covering the period roughly from her daughter Alya’s first birthday to the Tsar’s abdication in March 1917 and the summer which followed. They reflect involvements with the poet Sonya Parnók and with a married economist of Polish origin, Nikodim Plutser-Sarnya. But there are also evocations of the Middle East, tributes to the Jews and to her sister Asya, plus a cycle in which Don Juan accosts Carmen and is buried in a grave amidst the Russian snow. Generally appearing in English for the very first time, they include several of the most accomplished and unforgettable poems Tsvetaeva was ever to write.