Friday, 10 March 2017

The Young Wife's Dream - Siamanto

Year after year, sitting alone at my window,
I gaze on thy path, my pilgrim heart-mate,
And by this writing I wish once more to sing
The tremors of my body and mind, left without a guardian.
Ah! dost thou not recall the sun on the day of thy departure?
My tears were so plentiful and my kisses so ardent,
Thy promises were so good and thy return was to be so early!
Dost thou not recall the sun and my prayers on the day of thy departure,
When I sprinkled water on the shadow of thy steed from my water-jar,
That the seas might open before thee,
And the earth might bloom beneath thy feet?

Ah, the sun of the day of thy departure has changed to black night,
And the tears of waiting, beneath the shower of so many years,
Have poured from mine eyes like stars on my cheeks,
And behold! their roses have withered.
It is enough. Through longing for thee, I feel like plucking out my hair;
I am still under the influence of the wine of thy cup,
And a mourner for thy absent superb stature;
And, wounding my knees with kneeling at the church door,
I entreat for thee, turning towards the west.

Let the seas some day dry up from shore to shore,
And let the two worlds approach each other in an instant!
Then I should have no need of heaven or of the sun.
Return! I am waiting for thy return on the threshold of our cottage.
My hands empty of thy hands, I dream of thee, in my black robes.
Return, like the sweet fruits of our garden!
My heart’s love keeps my kiss for thee.

Oh, my milk-white hips have not yet known motherhood,
And I have not yet been able to decorate a swaddling cloth
With my wedding veil, wrought with golden thread;
And I have not yet been able to sing, sitting beside a cradle,
The pure, heavenly lullaby of Armenian mothers.
Return! My longing has no end,
When the black night comes thus to unfold its shrouds,
When the owls in the courtyard shriek with one another.
When my sobs end and my tears become bloody,
Lonely in my dreams of a despairing bride,
With my hands, like a demon, I begin
To sift upon my head the earth of my grave, which is drawing near to me.

Siamanto (Atom Yarjanian) (1878 - 1915) Turkey
Translated by Alice Stone Blackwell

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