Verse > Anthologies > Deutsch and Yarmolinsky, comps. > Modern Russian Poetry
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Deutsch and Yarmolinsky, comps.  Modern Russian Poetry.  1921.
 
“With My Fancy I Grasped”
By Konstantin Balmont (b. 1867)
(Trans. Avrahm Yarmolinsky and Cecil Cowdrey)
 
WITH my fancy I grasped at the vague shadows straying,
At the vague shadows straying where the daylight had fled;
I ascended a tower, and the stairway was swaying,
And the stairway was swaying underneath my light tread.
 
And the higher I climbed, ever clearer were rounded,        5
Ever clearer were rounded dreaming hilltops aglow;
And from Heaven to Earth twilight voices resounded,
Twilight voices resounded from above and below.
 
And the higher I rose, strange horizons defining,
Strange horizons defining, did the summits appear;        10
And my eyes as I looked were caressed by their shining,
Were caressed by their shining, their farewell, sad and clear.
 
Now the night had appeared; Earth in darkness lay dreaming,
Earth in darkness lay dreaming, like a slumbering star,
While the smoldering sun, his dim embers still gleaming,        15
His dim embers still gleaming, shone for me from afar.
 
I had learned to ensnare the vague shadows far straying,
The vague shadows far straying, where the daylight had fled;
Ever higher I rose, and the stairway was swaying,
And the stairway was swaying underneath my light tread.        20
 
 
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