Additional Book Information
Series: NYRB Classics
Publication Date: November 13, 2018
Portraits without Frames
by Lev Ozerov, translated from the Russian by Maria Bloshteyn, Robert Chandler, Boris Dralyuk, and Irina Mashinski
An NYRB Classics Original
We stopped and Shklovsky told me
quietly, but clearly,
“Remember, we are on our way out.
On our way out.” And I recalled
...the wall of books,
all written by a man
in times that were hard to bear.
Lev Ozerov’s finest book, Portraits Without Frames (1996) comprises fifty intimate, skillfully crafted accounts of meetings with important figures, ranging from fellow poets Anna Akhmatova and Boris Pasternak, to prose writers Isaac Babel and Andrey Platonov, to artists and composers Vladimir Tatlin and Dmitry Shostakovich. It is both a testament to an extraordinary life and a perceptive mini-encyclopedia of Soviet culture. Composed in delicate, rhythmic free verse, Ozerov’s portraits are like nothing else in Russian poetry.