"I experienced great fame, I experienced great disgrace and I have come to the conclusion that, in essentials, it is all the same" - Anna Akhmatova, enduring the scathing attack by Stalin and his flunkies.
"Anna Akhmatova is one of the representatives of a reactionary literarary quagmire devoid of ideas... one of the standard bearers of a hollow, empty, aristocratic salon poetry which is absolutely foreign to Soviet Literature.... Anna Akhmatova's subject-matter is thoroughly individualistic. The range of her poetry is pitifully limited -- this is the poetry of a feral lady from the salons, moving between the boudoir and the prayer-stool. It is based on erotic motifs linked with motifs of mourning, melancholy, death, mysticism, and isolation. … She is half-nun, half whore, or rather both whore and nun, with her petty, narrow private life, her trivial experiences, and her religious-mystical eroticism. Akhmatova's poetry is totally foreign to the people."
"I experienced great fame, I experienced great disgrace and I have come to the conclusion that, in essentials, it is all the same"
I'll leave you with these words from Anna Akhmatova's famous poem, Requiem:
I have learned how faces fall to bone,
how under the eyelids terror lurks,
how suffering inscribes on cheeks
the hard lines of its cuneiform texts,
how glossy black or ash-fair locks
turn overnight to tarnished silver,
how smiles fade on submissive lips,
and fear quavers in a dry titter.
And I pray not for myself alone...
for all who stood outside the jail,
in bitter cold or summer's blaze,
with me under that blind red wall.