What's P'shat?

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What’s in a Name? (Vayishlach)

What's P'shat?

Alexander Pushkin, 1799-1837. Alexander Pushkin, 1799-1837.

What is my name to you? It will die:
a wave that has but rolled to reach
with a lone splash a distant beach;
or in the timbered night a cry…

It will leave a lifeless trace among
names on your tablets: the design
of an entangled gravestone line
in an unfathomable tongue.

What is it then? A long-dead past,
lost in the rush of madder dreams,
upon your soul it will not cast
Mnemosyne’s pure tender beams.

But if some sorrow comes to you,
utter my name with sighs, and tell
the silence: “Memory is true—
there beats a heart wherein I dwell.”

–Alexander Pushkin, “The Name”

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1 Comment

  1. Mike Shriqui says:

    Thanks for re-posting ‎last) year’s essay. I once again enjoyed it and learned from it. Shavua Tov Alex.

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