Discussion in 'Creative Corner' started by ibshambat, May 9, 2020.

  1. ibshambat

    ibshambat Banned

    Jul 2, 2015
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    In science of parting I received instruction
    From hatless laments of the sleepless night
    As oxen chewed, and grew the expectation,
    And end of city vigil was in sight -
    And I recall the rooster night that year
    When lost in doleful journey for too long
    Into the void the tear-drenched eyes did peer
    And woman's cry mingled with muse's song.

    Who yet again can say farewell, unknowing
    What longing and what sorrow waits for us,
    What good is it to judge the rooster's crowing
    When fire is burning in Acropolis;
    And on the somewhere dawn of some new lifetime,
    While oxen lazily chew roughage at the stall,
    Why does the rooster, herald of new lifetime,
    Flap his flamboyant wings on city wall?

    And yet I love the way fate weaves her gown:
    The shuttle runs, the spindle turns apace,
    And straight ahead, look now, for like swan's down
    The barefoot Delia is flying in your face!
    Structure of life is shoddily created
    When tongue is starved so utterly for light!
    All was before, and all will be repeated,
    And only recognition brings respite.

    Thus it will be: A figurine, transparent,
    Stands on an earthen dish that's clean and wide,
    And like a snow-white winter squirrel pelt
    A girl leans over wax and looks inside.
    Ours not is to divine the Greek Erebus:
    Wax is to her what bronze is to her mate.
    Our dice falls only in the field of battle;
    But women die as they're predicting fate.

    By Osip Mandelshtam
    Translated from Russian by Ilya Shambat

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