The Goblet

The Goblet

By Milan Rakić

Listen now to the words, pure and sincere
Of a suffering soul, kindred to your soul,
Ere thunder strikes and storm gets near
And suddenly dies my restless heart whole,
Listen to the songs passionate in vain, dear.

Ere the decisive battle, I gave not to you
A veil, or a wedding-ring, or a mantle new,
Like ancient heroes, of me to make you think,
When dire predicament befalls and too
Children begin to cry and women into grief sink.

Now lined up in the battlefield corpses lie.
Both rich and poor in a terrible mixture die.
The night falls, lighting flashes o’er the plain
As the last victim an old executioner is hung by,
A vast heap of the wounded lingers in the rain.

My beloved, will your limpid eyes find me
Among them? Will from the old goblet,
As the herald of eternal peace, fall a droplet
Onto the wounds, gaping and sore as can be?
Will the pain be wiped away by the droplet?

I’m waiting. Not a soul. Daylight does abate.
The night spills darkness and hours so late,
Not even stars flicker briefly in the skies.
Not a soul. Listening to the loud cries I wait
As the vast heap of the wounded in the rain lies.

Translation from the Serbian by:
Ljiljana Parović

KONDIR

Počuj draga, reči iskrene i jasne
Jedne bolne duše, tvojoj duši prisne,
Pre no oluj stigne i grom strašni prasne,
I nemirno srce najedanput svisne,
Počuj ove pesme uzaludno strasne.

Pre odsudnog boja ja ti nisam dao
Koprenu, ni burmu, ni azdiju, kao
Starinski junaci, po čemu ćeš mene
Pomenuti kada stigne udes zao
I zapište deca i zaplaču žene.

Sad na razbojištu leži leš do leša.
Plemići i sebri. Leži strašna smeša.
Noć se hvata, Samo munja katkad blisne.
Dok poslednje žrtve stari krvnik veša,
Nepregledna hrpa ranjenika kisne…

Hoće li me naći među njima tvoje
Bistre oči, draga? Hoće l iz kondira,
Ko preteča skromna večitoga mira,
Pasti kap na rane što zjape i gnoje?
Hoće l pasti kaplja što bolove spira?

Čekam. Nigde nikog. Svetlost dana gasne.
Noć prosipa tamu i časove kasne,
Ni zvezde na nebu da za trenut blisne. —
Čekam. Nigde nikog. Uz vapaje glasne
Nepregledna hrpa ranjenika kisne…

kosovka-devojka

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