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The Prophet

Here is a poem called The Prophet by Pushkin. A review on the poem will follow. The second stanza is the original text in Russian.

Athrist in spirit, through the gloom
Of an unpeopled waste I blundered,
And saw a six-winged Seraph loom
Where the two pathways met and sundered.
He laid his fingers on my eyes:
His touch lay soft as slumber lies,-
And like and eagle's, his crag shaken,
Did prophetic eyes awaken.
Upon my ears his fingers fell
And sound rose, - stormy swell on swell:
I heard the spheres revolving, chiming,
The angels in their soaring sweep,
The monsters moving in the deep,
The green vine in the valley climbing.
And from my mouth the Seraph wrung
Forth by its roots my sinful tongue;
The evil things in vain it babbled
His hand drew forth and so effaced,
And the wise serpent's tongue he placed
Between my lips with hand blood-dabbled;
And with a sword he clove my breast,
Plucked out the heart he made beat higher,
And in my stricken bosom pressed
Instead a coal of living fire.
Upon the wastes, a lifeless clod,
I lay, and heard the voice of God:
"Arise, oh, prophet, watch and hearken,
And with my Will thy soul engird,
Roam the grey seas, the roads that darken,
And burn men's hearts with mighty Words."

Translation by Babette Deutsch and Avrahm Yarmolinsky

Духовной жаждою томим,
В пустыне мрачной я влачился, -  
И шестикрылый серафим 
На перепутьи мне явился. 
Перстами легкими как сон 
Моих зениц коснулся он. 
Отверзлись вещие зеницы, 
Как у испуганной орлицы. 
Моих ушей коснулся он, -  
И их наполнил шум и звон: 
И внял я неба содроганье, 
И горний ангелов полет, 
И гад морских подводный ход. 
И дольней лозы прозябанье. 
И он к устам моим приник, 
И вырвал грешный мой язык, 
И празднословный, и лукавый, 
И жало мудрыя змеи 
В уста замершие мои 
Вложил десницею кровавой. 
И он мне грудь рассек мечом, 
И сердце трепетное вынул 
И угль, пылающий огнем, 
Во грудь отверстую водвинул. 
Как труп в пустыне я лежал, 
И бога глас ко мне воззвал: 
"Восстань, пророк, и виждь, и внемли, 
Исполнись волею моей, 
И, обходя моря и земли, 
Глаголом жги сердца людей". 


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