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Evgeny Baratynsky

Evgeny Baratynsky


Two Fates

Wise Providence gave our perception
  The choice between two different fates:
Either blind hope and agitation, 
  Or hopelessness and deadly rest.

Let him trust to seductive hopes,
  Who’s sure with his unpracticed mind,
Who knows mocking fortunes slopes, 
  Only through rumour, spread behind. 

Have hope, young people, brave and ardent!
  Fly with your pairs of strongest wings; 
For you the projects, great and sudden,
  And young heart’s ever burning dreams!

But you, who’ve now tried and measured
  All humane fate, deep grief and strife, 
And vanity of humane pleasure – 
  Who doomed to knowledge of the life!

Away with those crowds tempting!
  In quiet peace, live your days, last,  
And guard the coldness, safely saving
  Your now apathetic heart.

Just like the dry dead peoples’ corpses,
  Which blessed with senseless of disease,
Waked up by spells of lords of forests,
  Rise from their graves, gnashing their teeth, 
So you, if kindle in hearts desire
  And trust to the deceptive moods,
Will be awaked only for mire,  
  For fresh pain of the former wounds. 

Translated by Yevgeny Bonver, January, 2001

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