Anna Karenina

You were no Eve of Russian literature

like Pushkin’s precious Tatyana.

You were no young, innocent, provincial girl

seduced by cynical Onegin, that bon vivant

corrupted by modern European values.

You were no mysterious Russian soul

brimful of essential purity and self-sacrifice –

with a love of pain and pure disdain of happiness.


Tatyana resisted all temptation, refusing

to take flight, rejecting the man she loved.

She was too good to be true; but you, Anna

what a pickle you got yourself in, choosing erotic sin.

You could share an affair with dashing Vronsky

elope with him and leave behind your husband

abandon your beloved son, Alexei.


But these were not the dreadful choices

sealing your tragic fate, my dear Anna.

It was those damned feelings you chased

all based on the sin of selfishness.

You fed on romance, passion and desire.

Your hot-hunger was insatiable, a fire

rip-roaring through restraint and all decorum

You sweated and panted wild for orgasm.


They say you’re a ‘drama queen’; heartless and mean

a woman undone by excess, always longing to undress

nakedly making grand errors of judgement.

By ignoring Tatyana’s fine example, you certainly forgot

there will always be those who tot up the ledger.

Your blood debt was owing, it had to be paid.


You saw the light at the end of the tunnel –

cool down, Anna, let the raw feelings subside

be watchful, wary and ever-ready to step aside

let the moments of  menace and gloom drain –

it might just be an oncoming train is due.


© M.L.Emmett 2016

greta garbo anna k 4

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Filed under Death, Family, Grief, Love, Poem, sadness

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