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🚧A winter tale

Zmitrok Biadulia
Zmitrok Biadulia на
Ведах беларускіх

Translated by


A snowy night hangs, a savage night hangs, A grey pelt above forests’wild tresses.

In white plumage of snow, in a white silk of snow, Valleys, hills under rich snowy dresses.

In the wild of the woods, the age-slumbering woods, Dwell a people, ill-natured, unspeaking.

In a palace of glass, on a bed all of glass Lies a maiden with sun-bright hair, sleeping.

Go you, call her by name; go you, wake her again — Then all fir-trees will utter harsh creaking.

Then the tempest will moan, then the tempest will groan, White-eyed winter complain with loud speaking.

Winter then, in alarm, winter then, fearing harm, In a frenzy of frost will spin, swirling;

Like a horse without rein, like a grey-and-white flame, The blind snowstorm will rush, rearing, whirling.

And the maid will sigh deep, stir in heavy-dreamed sleep, With her fingers brush brows clear of hoar-frost, She will gaze all around, unrestrained, all around, Sad the grey wolves will howl in the forest.

Go you, rouse her again — and the spring comes again, Over ploughland larks revel unstinting,

On the river, ice cracks, and away the floes break, And the playful floods wash out the winter.

Translated by Vera Rich.


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Collections: Belarusan Lyric poetry