One hundred and forty thousand soldiers of Pontus Mithridates
- archers, cavalry, spears, helmets, swords, shields –
come to a foreign country by the name of Cappadocia.
army stretched. riders gloomy
pohlyadыvayut on the sides. Ashamed of his poverty,
space with them every step feels, how far
It turns into a close. Especially - Mountain, whose
vertices, charter equally from crimson
dawn, mauve twilight, cloud crowding,
acquire - from a stranger vigilance –
in the field, if not in the definition. army afar
It looks like a winding river,
whose source tries to keep up with the mouth,
that, too, all the time looking back to the source.
And the terrain, as the Army moves eastward,
reflected both in the mainstream, from brown outback

temporarily transformed into a proud dispassionate backdrop
stories. The shuffling of many feet,
swearing, the jingle of harness, Leggings of the blade,
gomon, thicket copies. Suddenly the sentinel rider
He stops in his tracks: validity or whim?
away, across the plateau, replacing the landscape,
there are legions of Sulla. Sulla, forgetting Maria,
I brought here by legions, to explain, whom
It belongs - against stigma
Winter moon - Cappadocia. Staying, army
built for battle. stone plateau
the last time the place looks, where no one ever
died. fire smoke, roars of laughter; singing: "The fox in a trap".
king Mithridates, lying on a flat stone,
dreams inevitable: naked body, chest,
lyadvie, tanned thigh, rings pile.

The same spots all the rest of the army
plus legions of Sulla. What is does
not lack of choice, but the effect of full moon. In Asia
space, usually, hiding from myself
and by accusations of uniformity
to the conqueror, in head, silvering
the armor, the beard. moonlit,
the army is no longer a river, proud of length,
but the vast lake, whose depth is precisely
then, you need space, living cooped,
because proportional to the distance traveled.
That is why the Parthians, then, rarely, Romans,
then they both sometimes wander here,
Cappadocia. Army essence of water,
without which no plateau, us, let's say, the mountains
You would not know, as they appear in the user's profile; even more so, in three

quarter. Two sleeping lake with floating inside
body glitter in the dark as a victory flora
of fauna, to merge the morning
in a hollow in the common mirror, where fit all
Cappadocia - the sky, land, sheep,
nimble lizard - but where the person
disappear from sight. Only, go, the eagle,
hovering in the dark, accustomed to his wing,
knows the future. Looking down the indifference
poultry - as a bird, Unlike the king,
from man even, repeatable - Eagle, steam
present, involuntarily soars in the coming
and, naturally, in the past, in history: in late
prolonged action. for it, of course,
the essence of something temporary friction
permanent. Matches of sulfur, sleep

of reality, troops of the area. In Asia
quickly dawns. Something chirps. Shiver
It runs through the body, when you rise,
It infects chilliness lanky,
harvesting stubbornly to the ground
shadow. In dairy dawn haze
heard a noise, cough, snatches of phrases.
And what he saw half a million eyes
the sun sets in motion a spear, Mosley, Quadriga,
riders, archers, ratnikov. And army
They go at each other, as a line-by-line
slamming in the middle of the book
or - more precisely! - as the two mirrors, as the two shields, as two
faces, two terms, instead of the amount
generating difference and subtracting Sulla
from Cappadocia. whose grass,

themselves can not see spawn,
most benefit from ringing,
clang, screening, screams and so on., looking
in shards of broken pieces of the Legion
and fallen Pontiacs. sword,
king Mithridates, not thinking about anything,
rides amid the chaos, copies, range.
The battle looks from afar like fused "Oh-ho-ho",
rather, both from his sight
double infuriated amalgam.
And with each falling in the ranks
terrain, like tip tupyaschemusya,
loses its distinctiveness, harshness. And in the east, and
in the south are triumphant again vagueness, silhouette,
They carry it with them fallen to the light
features conquered Cappadocia.


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Joseph Brodsky
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