Janka Kupała

Why?

For the free spirit no measure or limits bound it,

Nowhere is barred to it, whither it cannot soar,

It will not perish or lose faith in self, though roars

Life's chaos, and dark universal shapes surround it.

 

It opens doors to hearts', souls' mysteries profoundest,

It learns what was not learned in the long years of yore,

Like phoenix from the ashes, it will rise once more

From the pit where beasts of darkness would confound it.

 

Mighty, eternal, from a million suns created,

Thunder and lightning in its hands, it will not fail,

Though the fire seethes it, though the frosty tempests flail...

 

Why do you count for naught, here, spirit of unabated

Strength, here where, their fetters chiming o'er their fate, a

Slave gives his fellow slave blood and fire in full scale.

 

1915

 




Source: Janka Kupała. Sonnets. Mastackaja litaratura, 2002.
Translation: Вера Рыч

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