U3A logo

Poetry & Verse Group - Final Page

Thank you to all those who have contributed since this group began on 30 January 2021 by sending in contributions or reading this page. Recently many of the groups that were not meeting face to face - due to Covid 19 - have started up again due to the government's changes to guidelines. Whilst this group was never intended to be a face to face one there has now been a considerable reduction in contributions such that the group is no longer viable. I say goodbye sadly having had the pure enjoyment of opening up contributions on a variety of subjects to find little gems. I would like to thank Tony Dix – U3As Web Manager – without whose electronic wizardry the graphics would not have been so amazing. I would also like to thank the committee of the Bridport U3A for giving me this opportunity to challenge myself and fulfil a dream. Linda Moore, Convenor.

The email address is :- [email protected]

Last Week's Contributions


            The Kremlin, Official Residence of The President, Moscow. Istockphoto.com.



One day goes to electric light

And matchbox is empty.

But in the kitchen in blue colour burns the gas.

Cigarettes in hands, cup of tea on the table,

It's simple plan.

And there isn't something else, everything

inside of us.


Our hearts require the changes,

Our eyes require the changes,

Into our laugh and our tears,

And into pulse of veins


We are waiting for changes.


We can't be proud of wisdom of eyes

And of skilful gestures,

We don't need it to understand each other.

Cigarettes in hands, tea on the table,

It all came back to where it had started

And suddenly we afraid of changing something.


An extract from Changes! a song written by

Viktor Tsoi and performed by the Soviet rock

band Kino. He died in a car collision on

15 August 1990.       lyricstranslate.com

Viktor Tsoi: The Undying Icon of

Soviet Dissident Rock


21 June 1962 is the birth date of Viktor

Tsoi, a Korean-Russian rock star from

the late years of the Soviet Union who

now enjoys cult status across Russian-

speaking countries, 30 years after death.


Tsoi studied art but soon dropped out

of school and started playing rock in the

1970s.  This was banned by Soviet

authorities as a symbol of 'Western



By 1982 Tsoi had created his band

'Kino' and started recording with his

friend Boris Grebenshchikov's band

'Akvarium.'  The lyrics spread by

word of mouth, attracting attention

with their messages of youth

empowerment, independent ideas

and absence of praise for the

Communist Party.  After Perestroika

more tolerance was allowed in the

arts and Kino were officially able

to perform.


The Road


Down into the ravine, then forward

Up the embankment to the top,

The ribbon of the road runs snaking

Through wood and field without a stop.

By all the precepts of perspective

Well-surfaced highway windings rush

Among the fields, among the meadows,

Not raising dust, nor stuck in slush.

The peaceful pond nearby ignoring

(On which a duck with ducklings swam)

The road once more is forward soaring

On having crossed and left the dam.

Now-down a slope again it hastens,

Now-on and upwards, in a climb,

As only life, maybe, is meant to

Strain up and onward all the time.

Through thousands of unheard-of fancies,

Through times and countries, climb and fall,

Through helps and hindrances it races

Relentless, too, towards a goal;

And this is to have lived your fullest,

Experienced all-at home, abroad-

Just as the landscape now is livened

By twists and turnings of the road.


By Boris Pasternak

1890 - 1960

             The Hermitage Museum at The Winter Palace, St. Petersburg. SAINT-PETERSBURG.COM

                       St. Basil's Cathedral, An Orthodox Church in Red Square, Now A Museum. Bing.com/Images.

Death of the Poet

The Poet's dead! - a slave to honor -

He fell, by rumour slandered,

Lead in his breast and thirsting for revenge,

Hanging his proud head!.....   

The Poet's soul could not endure

Petty insults' disgrace.

Against society he rose,

Alone, as always ...and was slain!

Slain!....What use is weeping now,

The futile chorus of empty praise

Excuses mumbled full of pathos?

Fate has pronounced its sentence!

Was it not you who spitefully

Rebuffed his free, courageous gift

And for your own amusement fanned

The nearly dying flame?

Well now, enjoy yourselves ...he couldn't

Endure the final torture:

Quenched is the marvellous light of genius,

Withered Is the triumphal wreath.


An extract from the original poem by

Mikhail Y. Lermontov on the death of his

fellow poet Alexander Pushkin in 1837.

Taken from A Bilingual Anthology of

Russian Verse.

How did Pushkin Die?

Pushkin and his wife - Natalya – met George

D'Anthes in 1834. He was the adopted son of

the Dutch ambassador, a handsome and

dashing Frenchman. In 1835 he began paying

court to Natalya. Time passed and in 1837 a

letter was received by Pushkin advising him

that he had been elected to 'The Most Serene

Order of Cuckolds.'


It was never truly known if Natalya had been

unfaithful but society's rules dictated that

there must be a dual which took place on 27

January 1837.  Badly wounded Pushkin died

within two days from peritonitis. D'Anthes had

just a light wound to his arm.          Wikipedia


M. Y. Lermontov

Lermontov graduated in 1834 and joined the

Life-Guard Hussar regiment but became

frustrated as he was critical of his time and

his country. The only outlet he had was

his poetry but this had to be in secret. He

was arrested for writing 'Death of the Poet'-

about Pushkin's life - as he had implied the

dual was orchestrated by the Tsar's regime.

He also died in a dual - on 15 July 1841.



             Short History of Russian Theatre


             The roots of Russian theatre lie in pagan

             shows with dramatic recitations of fables,

             tales and proverbs.  These included much

             dancing and singing performed by

             skomorokhi – travelling minstrels.


             There was also church theatre in which

             bible stories were acted.  In 1672 the first

             theatre in Russia was opened to stage

             plays on biblical subjects at the court of

             Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich.


             In the 19th century Moscow and

             St Petersburg became centres of

             theatrical life.  The Maly (Small) theatre

             was founded in 1824 and the Bolshoi

             (Big) Theatre was founded in 1825.


             Since then more theatres have been

             built and today the Russian theatre

             enjoys freedom of creativity.




In the Worldly Steppe

In the worldly steppe, so mournful and endless,

Three springs mysteriously fought through

withered earth:

The spring of youth is speedy and rebellious,

It boils and runs, and ripples in a blaze.

Castalian spring, in worldly steppe, enlivens

Exiles, whose fate is doleful and hard.

The last of them – the cold spring of oblivion -

Will always help to quench the thirst of hearts.

                                              (Shared by M.G)

Three Springs

Three springs in life's unbroken joyless desert

Mysteriously issue from the sands:

The spring of youth, uneven and rebellious,

Bears swift its sparkling stream through

sunny lands;

Life's exiles drink the wave of inspiration

That swells the limpid fount of Castaly;

But 'tis the deep, cold wellspring of oblivion

That slakes most sweetly thirst and ecstasy.


Alexander Pushkin is thought to be the

greatest Russian poet and the founder of

modern Russian literature.  1799 – 1837


                      The Bolshoi Theatre, Moscow. shutterstock.com.

Copyright © Bridport & District u3a 2021, Charity Registration No 1165000