Thursday Poem - To My Friends
The poem I would like to share with you today is one that I found over ten years ago. It struck a chord with me then, and the same chord resonates whenever I read it. Primo Levi was a concentration-camp survivor, scientist and writer. I found him as a poet, but apparently, he is best known for the Periodic Table of The Elements. - Stories connected in to the elements. Wikipedia entry for Levi here. His 1987 death was apparently a suicide, but there are those who do not accept this view.
To My Friends
Dear friends, and here I say friends
In the broad sense of the word:
Wife, sister, associates, relatives,
Schoolmates of both sexes,
People seen only once
Or frequented all my life;
Provided that between us, for at least a moment,
A line has been stretched,
A well-defined bond.
I speak for you, companions of a crowded
Road, not without its difficulties,
And for you too, who have lost
Soul, courage, the desire to live;
Or no one, or someone, or perhaps only one person, or
Who are reading me: remember the time
Before the wax hardened,
When everyone was like a seal.
Each of us bears the imprint
Of a friend met along the way;
In each the trace of each.
For good or evil
In wisdom or in folly
Everyone stamped by everyone.
Now that the time crowds in
And the undertakings are finished,
To all of you the humble wish
That autumn will be long and mild.
16 December 1985
Does anyone else have a favourite Levi poem? Anyone read any of his prose?