Sunday, March 26, 2006

Found in Translation

Below is a snippet of a poem from Soviet dissident poet Igor Guberman that was mentioned on one of the Belarusian blogs I've been visiting over the past few days. The blogger's server has been down for several hours now. The translation is mine:
Критерий качества державы -
Успехи сук и подлецов;
Боюсь теперь не старцев ржавых,
А белозубых молодцов.

The criterion of the quality of power—
The successes of bitches and scoundrels
Is that I now fear not the rusty old geezers
But the good-old-boys with bleached teeth.
There is certainly something compelling about the sentiment, no? What are we to make of a world where we no longer have to fear the devils of the old regime but the smarmy suits on the street, these indicators of progress?

Now that I have a taste of Russian verse after so many years, I'm itching to translate the rest of the poem. Perhaps a project to be saved for another day.

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