You, like the faithful dove, bring back
a green branch to the waiting ark
and place it in his eager hand;
you only with your echoing voice
give inspiration a human face
and bring his dream to land.
by Евгений Абрамович Баратынский (Yevgeny Abramovich Baratynsky)
translated by Peter France
Fun fact: This extract refers to Genesis 8:11 where a a dove was released by Noah after the flood in order to find land; it came back carrying a freshly plucked olive leaf – a sign of life after the Flood and of God’s bringing Noah, his family and the animals to land.
March saw winter gain in strength –
bitter cold and unrelenting storms.
In reckless fury, blinding spite,
the wind blew only from the north.
No hint of spring. Gripped by inertia,
the heart slips all too close to places
of no return: no self, no words,
mere apathy and voicelessness.
Who can bring back our sight, our hearing?
Who can retrace the way to hearth
and home now that all trace of home
is gone, wiped from the earth?
by Мария Сергеевна Петровых (Maria Sergeyevna Petrovykh)
translated by Robert Chandler and Irina Mashinski
the final line could be considered a sceptical response to Khrushchev’s Thaw during the, relatively, liberal period after Stalin’s death.
Also it is quite timely considering the current UK weather where ‘the Beast for the East’ and Storm Emma are double teaming the British Isles.