The Pushkin Page - Poems by Year
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Poems by Year
1821-23 : 1824-26 : 1827-29 : 1830-32 : 1833-36
We sailed in numerous company.
A few of us drew fast the sheeting,
The rest with mighty oar were beating
The brine; while, calm on slumbrous sea,
Our skillful helmsman clasped the rudder
To guide the vessel's thrust,
And I, at ease in carefree trust,
I sang to them... A sudden gust
Swept down and set the deep ashudder,
And crew and helmsman, all were lost!--
I only, secret singer, tossed
Upon the coast by seas in torment,
I sing my anthems as before,
And by a boulder on the shore
Dry in the sun my sodden garment.
To Dawe, Esq.*
Why does your wondrous pencil strive
My Moorish profile to elicit?
Your art will help it to survive,
But Mephistopheles will hiss it.
Draw Miss Olenin's face. To serve
His blazing inspiration's duty,
The genius should spend his verve
On homage but to youth and beauty.
Wandering the noisy streets,
Entering the crowded church,
Sitting among wild young men,
I am lost in my thoughts.
I say to myself: the years will fly,
And however many are here, we shall all
Go down under the eternal vaults.
Someone's hour is already at hand.
Gazing at a solitary oak,
I think: this patriarch
Will outlive my forgotten age
As it outlived the age of my fathers.
When I caress a dear child,
I'm already thinking: goodbye!
I yield my place to you: it's time
For me to decay and you to blossom.
I say goodbye to each day,
Trying to guess
Which among them will be
The anniversary of my death.
And how and where shall I die?
Fighting, travelling, in the waves?
Or will the neighbouring valley
Receive my cold dust?
And though it's all the same
To the feelingless body,
I should like to rest
Closer to the places I love.
And at the grave's entrance
Let young life play,
And the beauty of indifferent nature
Never cease to shine.
I loved you; and perhaps I love you still,
The flame, perhaps, is not extinguished; yet
It burns so quietly within my soul,
No longer should you feel distressed by it.
Silently and hopelessly I loved you,
At times too jealous and at times too shy.
God grant you find another who will love you
As tenderly and truthfully as I.