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Aleksandr Pushkin

Aleksandr Pushkin

ALEXANDR PUSHKIN: Perfidy

Perfidy

When your best friend, to sounds of your words,
Begins to answer with sarcastic silence;
When he pulls out, from a touch of yours,
His own hand with visual repugnance; 
When, having pierced you with his look from side,
He nods his head in the despiteful fashion, - 
Don’t say, “He’s ill, he’s an unhappy child,
He’s tortured by his madness-like dejection,”
Don’t say, “He is unthankful and unfair
He’s evil, weak and mustn’t be friendly treated,
And all his life’s just somewhat of nightmare…”
Or are you right, and calmly will repeat it?
If you were right, he’s ready to be dead,
If it’s impossible to be by you forgiven,
But if you used a sacred might of Friend
To push him in unhappiness and grievance;
If you insidiously stung his unstable mind,
His fearful imagination,
And was so glad to find a proud fun
In his deep pine, sore tears and humiliation;
But if you self was the disguised advent
Of dirty clemency, destroying all his sacred,
But if you bound him, when he was slept,
And, laughing, pushed him to a realm of hatred,
And he had read in mute soul of yours,
All those secrets, with his look of sadness, -- 
Then go forth, not sparing empty words, –
Your doom is last, your destiny is merciless.


Translated by Yevgeny Bonver, February, 2002


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