Stikhi o prekrasnoy dame, 1904
Nechayannaya radost, 1907
Snezhnaya maska, 1907
Zemlya v snegu, 1908
Vozmezdie, wr. 1910-1921, pb. 1922
Nochyne chasy, 1911
Krugly god, 1913
Stikhi o Rossii, 1915
Sobraniye stikhotvoreniy i teatr v 4 kigakh, 1916 (4 volumes; includes the poetic cycles Puzyri zemli, Gorod, Faina, etc.)
Solovinyy sad, 1918
Skify, 1918 (The Scythians, 1982)
Dvenadtsat, 1918 (The Twelve, 1920)
Iamby: Sovremennye stikhi, 1907-1914, 1919
Sedoe utro, 1920
Za granyu proshlykh dnei, 1920
Poems of A. B., 1968
Selected Poems, 1972
Balaganchik, pr., pb. 1906 (The Puppet Show, 1963)
Korol’na ploshchadi, pb. 1907 (The King in the Square, 1934)
Neznakomka, pb. 1907 (The Unknown Woman, 1927)
Pesnya sudby, pb. 1909, revised pb. 1919 (The Song of Fate, 1938)
Roza i krest, pb. 1913 (The Rose and the Cross, 1936)
Ramzes, pb. 1921
Rossia i intelligentsia, 1918
O simvolizme, 1921 (On Symbolism, 1975)
Pis’ma Aleksandra Bloka, 1925
Pis’ma Aleksandra Bloka k rodnym, 1927
Dnevnik Al. Bloka, 1911-1913, 1928
Dnevnik Al. Bloka, 1917-1921, 1928
Zapisnye knizhki Al. Bloka, 1930
Pis’ma Al. Bloka k E. P. Ivanovu, 1936
Aleksandr Blok i Andrey Bely: Perepiska, 1940
Aleksandr Blok (blawk) was born on November 28, 1880. His father was a jurist who later became professor of public law at the University of Warsaw; his mother was one of the daughters of the famous botanist, Beketov, who was also the rector of the University of St. Petersburg. Aleksandr’s parents were divorced when he was three years old, and afterward he lived with his mother in St. Petersburg and at the Shakmatovo estate near Moscow with his maternal grandparents. There he was protected from material cares in a setting of flowers, books, and music. He was in the constant company of cultured people whose abiding interests were literature and art. At the age of five, Blok began writing poems.
In 1898 he met fifteen-year-old Lyubov Mendeleeva, daughter of the famous chemist D. I. Mendelev. Five years later they were married, and at first they were very happy. Their love, however, coincided with another event–Blok’s discovery of the work of Vladimir Solovyov–and Blok’s feelings for his wife blended with those about Solovyov’s mystical adoration of Sophia, the feminine principle of divine wisdom.
In 1903 Blok was discovered by Dmitry Merezhkovsky, who arranged to have a few of his poems published. Blok’s first collection of poems, Stikhi o prekrasnoy dame (verses about the beautiful lady), was published in 1904. It particularly showed Solovyov’s influence. Soon, however, the realities of wedlock altered both Blok’s conception of Lyubov and his notions of Sophia.
After 1904 Blok turned to more earthly subjects. In the poetic cycles Puzyri zemli (earth’s bubbles) and Gorod (the city), he depicted hunchbacks and prostitutes. Blok never separated from his wife, but after 1904 they led independent lives. He graduated from the University of St. Petersburg in 1906 with a degree in philology. His poetic cycles Snezhnaya maska (the masque of snow) and Faina were dedicated to actress Natalia Volokhova. In them Blok became increasingly obsessed with the bizarre. After the deaths of his young child and his father in 1909, he went abroad, but his protracted travels did little to change his mood.
After 1909 Blok gradually became more interested in Russian history. In Vozmezdie (retribution), on which he worked from 1910 until a few months before his death in 1921, he realistically describes social conditions in Russia. Blok welcomed the revolution of 1917 as the fulfillment of a dream. Two 1918 works, The Twelve and The Scythians, praise the revolution as a confirmation and redemption of the Russian people.
In 1919 and 1920 Blok worked on translations and wrote Ramzes (Rameses), a historical drama. He became increasingly disillusioned with the revolution and neglected to conceal his attitude toward the government. In the early months of 1921 Blok’s depression grew uncontrollable. In July he broke down completely and lost his sanity. In pain and delirium he died on August 7, 1921.