22 January 2012

Mikhail Lermontov

Mikhail Lermontov (1814 - 1841) / S. Bondar.
Mihhail Lermontov.
Михаил Лермонтов.

Postcard, 1955.
My collection.

* Mikhail Yuryevich Lermontov (1814 – 1841), a Russian Romantic writer, poet and painter, sometimes called "the poet of the Caucasus", became the most important Russian poet after Alexander Pushkin's death in 1837. Lermontov is considered the supreme poet of Russian literature alongside Pushkin and the greatest figure in Russian Romanticism. His most important novel is "A Hero of Our Time".

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Here is the poem by Lermontov known by heart to all schoolchildren of Russia and the USSR:


Белеет парус одинокий
В тумане моря голубом!..
Что ищет он в стране далекой?
Что кинул он в краю родном?..

Играют волны — ветер свищет,
И мачта гнется и скрыпит...
Увы! он счастия не ищет,
И не от счастия бежит!

Под ним струя светлей лазури,
Над ним луч солнца золотой...
А он, мятежный, просит бури,
Как будто в бурях есть покой!


The Sail

The sail is whitening alone
In blue obscurity of sea:
What did it leave in country own?
What does it want so far to see.

The wind is strong, the mast is creaking,
The wave is playing with the wave ...
But not a fortune is it seeking,
Nor from this fortune is its way.

By it a stream is bright as azure,
By beams of sun it's warmed and blessed
But it is seeking gales as treasure,
As if the tempests give a rest.

(Translated from Russian by Yevgeny Bonver, 1990.)


Nii üksi siniudus loovib
üks puri merel avaral.
Mis ta küll võõrsilt leida soovib?
Mis kodumaal jäi maha tal?

Mast naksub, paindub, tuul on kähe,
laev läbi tõttab vahus veest.
Ah, õnne püüdma ta ei lähe,
ja ta ei page õnne eest.

Ta peal on taeva puhas vine,
all taevast heledamad veed; -
kuid torme ihkab mässuline,
just nagu rahu tooksid need!

(Tlk. August Sang)

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