Another poem by Lermontov this week. This one is gently elegiac but also sadly ironic as it was written in the year of his death. He was killed in a duel with a fellow officer at the age of 26.
I walk out alone into the darkness.
Through the mist the roadway flints gleam bright;
All is still, God speaks, the desert hearkens,
Star with star holds converse in the night.
Skies above show forth a solemn wonder;
Pale blue radiance laps the sleeping earth…
Why must I be anguished, torn asunder –
Old regrets? Or expectation’s birth?
No, of life I have no expectation,
No regretful memories to keep,
what I seek is peace, a liberation;
I wish for oblivion, to sleep…
Not that sleep of graveyards, chill and gruesome:
Rather for eternity to keep
Life’s full powers still dormant in my bosom,
Breast still gently heaving as I sleep;
Have by night and day, my ear beguiling,
Voices sing sweet melodies of love,
Shady oak trees ever green and smiling
Bend their boughs and rustle close above.