Wait for Me – A Poem By Konstantin Simonov

KonstantinSimonovWait for me, and I will come
Wait with might and main.
Wait when autumn’s drizzles drum
dreary on the pane.
Wait in winter’s blinding snow
Wait in summer’s heat.
Wait when others long ago
have recognized defeat.

Wait when no more letters come
from places far away.
Wait when tortured nerves go numb
from waiting every day.

 

Wait for me and I will come.
In no least thought abet
those who to the strain succumb
and urge you to forget.

Let mother, let my son lament
my all too certain loss.
Let my closest friends asent
with a hasty toss
shake a tear and gulp a drink
in memory of me.
Wait but do not dare to think
I’m in eternity.

For how are they to understand
those who could not wait
That it was you, not fortune’s hand
who saved me from my fate.

 

Dear readers, this used to be one of my favourite poems. I’ve rendered this from memory because I cannot find this version of the translation anywhere, or a copy of the print magazine. So there may be mistakes here.

I have no memory of the translator’s name. I believe I saw it in a 1969 copy of the Sputnik magazine. It was accompanied by the above photograph.

If anyone knows a link to this version, or have a printed text, let me know. I’d be happy to edit my copy to make any corrections.

I believe this version reads far better than the one that is currently popular. You can find that version here. Compare for yourself.  You can read more Konstantin Simonov poems and learn more about the poet here.

For some reason, I find the older translations of Russian poems far more appealing than modern ones. Is that just me?

 

 

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How much stays unseen… A Poem By Ludmilla Shchipakhina

Image

Image by NilookaD; Pickingflowers

 

How much stays unseen when some eye on us gazes–

A sub-text may run under clear-sounding phrases

And sighs of delight or expressions of sorrow

May differ in meaning from poses they borrow.

We lie on the grass, watch the sunlight which spreads,

But what are the thoughts that go round in our heads?

We meet. Stroll along in the garden’s deep shade,

But what is our purpose? What plans have we made?

Our time throbs and shakes with the problems of ages,

But man and his soul are a book of sealed pages!

At sight we are simple. No need for much guessing,

But what are our feelings? Extatic? Depressing?

We lunch in cheap restaurants without star rating

But maybe a triumph we are celebrating!

And perhaps it’s not transport that gives us a ride,

But invisible wings, which don’t show from outside.

 

Translated by Eva Strauss

From: Soviet Literature, 1979; ISSN-0202-1870

 

 

 

More lines from Light of the Hearth

ADDeSilva

ADDeSilva

A few more lines from the poetry collection, Light of the Hearth

By Ivan Savelyev | Translated by Walter May.

From your first song until your farewell song

There stretches in between a long stern road.

Here trickling like a ringing springtime stream,

And there like some broad-bosomed river it flows.

 

And in its waters, deep and pure and clear,

Like sand-bank islands, failures will sink and cease,

And out will blaze above the shining space

The lighthouse beams of mighty victories.

 

For all your previous disappointed hopes,

For all your losses, and for all distress,

They will light up for you your entire road–

Remember, and observe, and go ahead!

 

And may be here’s the wonder of constancy,

The marvel of loyalty which does not die out,–

That to your dream you’ll go, and not lose heart,

And not for even a moment will you doubt.

 

And maybe in such action lies our goal,

And even the primary purpose

Of life, let’s say:

To discover in your self an exalted song,

And not to betray it then in any way.

English Translation © Raduga Publications 1987

Light of the Hearth

By ADDesilva

By ADDesilva

A few lines from the poetry collection, Light of the Hearth

By Ivan Savelyev

The poems were translated by Walter May.

At any and every time of the year,

Whatever the dream I live at that hour,

With nature’s voice in harmony here

Is the tuning of my emotional power.

 

So near to me her tears, her hurts,

So heavy her grief and loss again,

That when they hack a branch from a birch

In my own arms I feel the pain.

 

*    *    *

 

No, the heavens are surely never blind,

And the earth can surely not lack sight.

Grasses deaf from birth you will not find.

Rivers without hearing would not be right.

 

It is we, the sons of heaven and earth,

Finding ourselves not all at once, I fear,

On the millennia’s steep road struggling forth,

Who are slowly learning to see and hear…

Stone walls do not a prison make…

Here’s the final stanza from To Althea, from Prison by Richard Lovelace.

I’m not even giving a source because I know this bit by heart (but not so much the complete poem).

Stone Walls do not a Prison make,
   Nor Iron bars a Cage;
Minds innocent and quiet take
   That for an Hermitage.
If I have freedom in my Love,
   And in my soul am free,
Angels alone that soar above,
   Enjoy such Liberty.
 
I just love this, taking it literally, even though I don’t believe in angels…
So, do stone walls a prison make? What do you think?
 
If you want to read to whole poem and a detailed analysis about it, I found that The Guardian had covered it as their Poem of the Week back in September 2013.
 
 

To see the world in a grain of sand…

Today I’m sharing with you a few selected lines from
Auguries of Innocence by  William Blake

Here’s the beginning :

To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour.

Its a long poem. You have to pause and wonder about each line and it would be worth it.

Here’s some more lines:

Every Night & every Morn
Some to Misery are Born.
Every Morn & every Night
Some are Born to sweet Delight.
Some ar Born to sweet Delight,
Some are born to Endless Night.

You can read the entire poem, Auguries of Innocence at PoemHunter.com. Don’t forget to check out other Blake poems as well.