Midnight

Midnight

By Djura Jakšić

It’s midnight,
That black-veiled silent goddess
Of a free soul she’s the blessedness,
Dark is the night, th’ evil hour has come.

But, what’s that hum?…
Under the black wing of a mute midnight,
Just like an immense solitary billow
That rolls across the sea high and low;
It’s roaring soft and slow as if dying,
As if coming from underground, horrifying.
Is it the spirits speaking to the earth?
Is it the earth cursing its deeds of little worth?
Or haply the heavens are journeying forth,
Not to listen to my curse henceforth;
So the stars and the sky are filled with rue,
As they bid to the world their last adieu!
What if the world of the sky is bereft?
What if no more dawn on earth is left?
What if the darkness
Stays on?…

The steps are heard as well…
If ‘tis midnight softly gliding I cannot tell.
Treading so quietly is not even the air;
As if it came from yonder world fair.
Is it a cloud drifting aloft furtively?
Is it some ailing man gasping heavily?
Is it an angel with a cure to save his life,
Or a keen scythe to cut short his strife?
Could it be love?….Could it be spite?…
It might be sneaking up, oh, yes it might,
To empty our sole glass of joy and delight?
Or haply tears of grief are poured alright,
To inundate us by their floods so shed,
Or the defunct are rising from the dead?

The door creaked open…
O ghost! Dearest spirit, o!
Darling mother! O I’m blessed so!
Many a day, many a year have passed,
Many a time truths were bitter in the past;
Many a time shivered my fearful heart,
Many a time people tore my soul apart;
Much I repented and much I sinned again,
And with cold death I consoled myself then;
With bitterness filled I drank many a glass,
Many a piece I drenched in tears, alas!
O mother, mother! Dearest spirit, o!
Mother, ever since I parted with thee,
No good or bliss has ever befallen me!…
Yet, thou might think: “He’s well, I believe,
For he harks not the spider softly weave
Its gossamer cobweb, with a silken thread,
Which over our gloomy ceiling is spread:
-Thou art among thy neighbours, thy kin.”

Yet, being among them is worse than a sin:
Hand in hand walk malice and disgrace,
Envy oft gives them a brotherly embrace,
Falsehood is their close and dear friend,
Villainy takes them to the world’s end;
Attended by flattery, served by treachery,
They seek infidelity to keep them company.
O, mother, mother, this world is malicious,
Life is, mother, so sorrowful and vicious!

Translated from the Serbian by:
Ljiljana Parović

PONOĆ

Ponoć je,
U crnom plaštu nema boginja.
Slobodne duše to je svetinja,
To gluvo doba, taj crni čas…

Al’ kakav glas?…
Po tamnom krilu neme ponoći,
K’o grdan talas jedan jedini
Da se po morskoj valja pučini;
Lagano huji k’o da umire,
Il’ da iz crne zemlje izvire.
Možda to dusi zemlji govore?
Il’ zemlja kune svoje pokore?
Il’ nebo možda dalje putuje,
Da moju kletvu više ne čuje;
Pa zvezde plaču, nebo tuguje,
Poslednji put se s zemljom rukuje!
Pa zar da neba svetu nestane?
Pa zar da zemlji više ne svane?
Zar da ostane
Tama?…

I hod se čuje…
Da l’ ponoć tako mirno putuje?
Ni vazduh tako tiho ne gazi;
K’o da sa onog sveta dolazi.
Il’ kradom oblak ide na više?
Il’ bolnik kakav teško uzdiše?
Il’ anđ’o melem s neba donosi?
Il’ oštru kosu, da ga pokosi?
Da ljubav ne ide?… Da zloba nije?…
Možda se krade, da nam popije
I ovu jednu čašu radosti?
Il’ možda suza ide žalosti,
Da nas orosi tužna kapljica?
Ili nam mrtve vraća zemljica?

Vrata škrinuše…
O duše! o mila seni!
O majko moja! o blago meni!
Mnogo je dana, mnogo godina,
Mnogo je gorkih bilo istina;
Mnogo mi puta drhtaše grudi,
Mnogo mi srca cepaše ljudi;
Mnogo sam kaj’o, mnogo grešio,
I hladnom smrću sebe tešio;
Mnogu sam gorku čašu popio,
Mnogi sam komad suzom topio.
O majko, majko! o mila seni!
Otkad te, majko, nisam video,
Nikakva dobra nisam video!…
Il’ možda misliš: „Ta dobro mu je,
Kad ono tiho tkanje ne čuje
Što pauk veze žicom tananom
Nad onim našim crnim tavanom:
– Među ljud’ma si, među bližnjima“…

Al’ zlo je, majko, biti međ’ njima:
Pod ruku s zlobom pakost putuje,
S njima se zavist bratski rukuje,
A laž se uvek onde nahodi
Gde ih po svetu podlost provodi;
Laska ih dvori, izdajstvo služi,
A nevera se sa njima druži…
O majko, majko, svet je pakostan,
Život je, majko, vrlo žalostan!

Midnight Pop

Advertisements
Resignation

Resignation

By Sima Pandurović

It’s again midnight dreary,
I missed it whilst awake I had lain,
With sorrow it touched my heart again;
The soul is anew weary,
And from shoulders my
No burden’s fallen. What do we care?
It’s past midnight, the sun’s rising high,
We should go and lie, my dreams so fair.

We would arise many a time;
Many a night awake did we lie
And oft an invisible force did we defy.
But, we’re sadly tired at this time;
Be it so!
Who’s yet to re-kindle the heart’s fire?
The best repose is still to come, I know.
My dreams so fair, we should retire.

Our fate will be the same; thus
We shall rise above the waves all
Of crazy life, unimaginably small,
Yet so hard for us.
And then, o!
Eternal gifts of good fate we’ll come by:
Quietude, peace, devoid of pain or woe.
My dreams so fair, we should go and lie.

Translation from the Serbian by:
Ljiljana Parović

Rezignacija

Opet je ponoć sumorna,
Opet je ponoć budnom mi promakla
I mekim krilom, tugom srce takla;
Opet je duša umorna,
A s grudi
Teret se nije sišao. Šta mari?
Ponoć je prošla. – Zora rudi…
Treba nam leći, snovi moji stari.

Često smo puta ustali;
Često smo puta duge noći bdili
I prkosili nevidljivoj sili.
Danas smo tužno sustali;
Pa neka!
Ko će još pep’o srca sad da žari?
Najbolji odmor još nas čeka.
Treba nam leći, snovi moji stari.

Svi ćemo proći ovako;
Svi ćemo brzo prebroditi vâle
Ludog života, nepojamno male,
A teške za nas tako.
I tada
Doći će dobre sudbe večni dâri:
Spokojstvo, mir, bez bola, jada.
Treba nam leći, snovi moji stari.

pandur

 

Midnight

Midnight

By Đura Jakšić

At dead midnight, thru thick trees
The stars blink quiet in the breeze,
As my heart beats quickly so –
Oh, thru thick trees I tread slow!

Nearby babbles a swift stream,
And flowers rest in a soft dream,
To kiss a maiden fair I now go –
Oh, thru thick trees I tread slow!

I’ll fall, I’ll die, my soul is alight,
It’ll burn me till the morrow bright,
As the hot sun melts the white snow,
Oh, thru thick trees I tread slow!

Translation from the Serbian by:
Ljiljana Parović

Kroz ponoć

Kroz ponoć nemu i gusto granje
Vidi se zvezda tiho treptanje,
Čuje se srca silno kucanje –
O lakše samo kroz gusto granje!

Tu blizu potok daljinu para,
Tu se na cveću cveće odmara,
Tu mene čeka ašikovanje-
O lakše samo kroz gusto granje!

Pašću, umreću, duša mi gore,
Rastopiće me do bele zore,
K’o grudu snega vrelo sunčanje-
O lakše, lakše, kroz gusto granje.