odnomu tyrant

He has been here: not yet in breeches –
in a coat of thick woolen cloth; restrained, slouching.
Arrest cafe regulars
ending later with the world culture,
it is this sort of revenge (not their,
but Time) for poverty, humiliation,
for bad coffee, boredom and battles
twenty one, losing them.

And this time swallowed revenge.
Now here is crowded, many laugh,
rattle plate. But before the, sitting down
for table, somehow pulls look.
everywhere plastic, Nickel - all wrong;
in cakes taste of sodium bromide.
occasionally, before closing, the theater
he is here, but incognito.

When he enters, they stand.
Some - in the service, Others - happiness.
The movement of the palm from wrist
he returned in the evening cosiness.
He drinks his coffee - the best, then what,
and eating a bagel, perched in a chair,
so delicious, and that the dead are "oh yeah!»
cried to, if resurrected.

January 1972

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Joseph Brodsky
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