This simile for swiftness drawing on an age in which telegram were one of the fastest forms of communication.  Also like the image of the yacht slicing the water as sharply as a lancet.


‘An American yacht, swift as a telegram, that cut the water like a lancet.’


Source: Osip Mandelstam, Journey to Armenia, trans. Sidney Monas, London: Notting Hill Editions, 2011, p. 53

Photo credit: Stefan Gunnarsson,


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