Monday 22 April 2024

Birthday, Rain

 Vladimir Nabokov was born on this day in 1899, though by the old calendar it would have been the 10th of April, and the following year it became the 23rd, so he celebrated his first birthday on our St George's Day. Anyway, here in England it's been a day (and night) of incessant rain, so here is a fitting poem by Nabokov, written in 1956...


How mobile is the bed on these nights of gesticulating trees when the rain clatters fast, the tin-toy rain with dapper hoof trotting upon an endless roof, travelling into the past. Upon old roads the steeds of rain slip and slow down and speed again through many a tangled year; but they can never reach the last dip at the bottom of the past because the sun is there.