An Evening after Rain (Вечер после Дождь), Mikhail Lermontov

lingua fennica

Portrait of Lermontov by Pyotr Zabolotsky, 1837 Portrait of Lermontov by Pyotr Zabolotsky, 1837

Mikhail Yurievich Lermontov (1814-1841) is perhaps best known outside Russia for his novel “A Hero of Our Time”, which is among many works that reflect his love of the Caucasus. He is unquestionably one of the great figures of nineteenth century Russian Romanticism. The name Lermontov reflects his Scottish ancestry: one of his ancestors was George Learmont, a seventeenth century mercenary.

I don’t think there’s a translator out there who doesn’t relish translating a poem in iambic pentameter…

Beyond my window now horizon fades,
Declining ray atop the colonnades –
The domes, the chimneys, crosses golden-leaved –
Is glistening, burning eyes of the deceived;
And fiery edges of the cloudy veil
Like snakes are sketched as if by pencil’s trail,
And softly breezes through the garden pass
Caressing stems of quivering rain-soaked grass…
Between those stems I spied a little bloom,
As ‘twere an…

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