It Is Not Seemly to Be Famous

“…as autumn mist on early mornings conceals the dreaming countryside.”

It is not seemly to be famous:
Celebrity does not exalt;
There is no need to hoard your writings
And to preserve them in a vault.

To give your all-this is creation,
And not-to deafen and eclipse.
How shameful, when you have no meaning,
To be on everybody’s lips!

Try not to live as a pretender,
But so to manage your affairs
That you are loved by wide expanses,
And hear the call of future years.

Leave blanks in life, not in your papers,
And do not ever hesitate
To pencil out whole chunks, whole chapters
Of your existence, of your fate.

Into obscurity retiring
Try your development to hide,
As autumn mist on early mornings
Conceals the dreaming countryside.

Another, step by step, will follow
The living imprint of your feet;
But you yourself must not distinguish
Your victory from your defeat.

And never for a single moment
Betray your credo or pretend,
But be alive-this only matters-
Alive and burning to the end.

Boris Pasternak

Love Wins

6 comments on “It Is Not Seemly to Be Famous

  1. s. kravitz says:

    I’m nicknamed Shamrock but my name is not Shamus
    Girlies on the tip cause my homie is famous

    -King Ad-Rock


  2. I absolutely love this poem. The image to illustrate is perfect. Your farm in the mist is beautiful.

    I have seen fame up close and its not good, not good at all. The dirty secret no one speaks of is how it changes people, makes them unclear who they really are and then for the rest of their lives they become who others think they are, and not their true selves. There are, of course, many examples today of people who are on everybody’s lips but have no meaning.

    A good find.


  3. shoreacres says:

    I am laughing – albeit silently so as not to wake my aunt, whose Kansas City couch I’m currently sleeping on. Well, typing on, now.

    I left on Wednesday for a little one-week trip, and discovered just before leaving that I had been Freshly Pressed and landed on the WordPress front page. Instant fame! Some people spend their blog-lives trying to find a way to make that happen. Since seeing what it did to a couple of my blog friends, my fervent prayer has been “Oh, please, save me from being freshly pressed.”

    Well, I’ll get through it. But it certainly is an experience that raises several important questions, and a few Pasternak never thought of. The single most amusing aspect has been being fussed at by people who “like” my post and then discover their avatar doesn’t show up when they do. As I explained to one person, I’d rather develop a relationship with my readers than count them, so I’ve disabled avatars. It puts the emphasis on the words rather than the number of “likes” represented by all those photos. I suppose my dislike of them is quirky, but it’s one way to try and avoid the blog popularity games that get played.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s