I have gone, I have left Mother Russia! All the girls I knew snivel and squeal. Now Iím sowing my seeds on some other Unfamiliar Elysian fields. On a tram in the Presnensky District Someone said: "Well, heís finally gone. Let him carry on there with his lyrics; Heíll be putting Versailles in his songs." Right behind me I hear them discuss me: "Thatís not him, go on, ask him - youíll see." "Yes, heís left." With their elbows they shove me And in taxis they sit on my knees. Thereís my friend from the Magadan prison, My old pal from the civil war years; They make out that I write to him: "Listen, Iím so bored, Vanya; Vanya, come here." And Iíve already told them Iím yearning To come back - I was humble, I begged. Thatís all rubbish! I wonít be returning For the reason that I havenít left. Iíve got gifts for those quick to accept it, So it ends as the best movies do: Thereís the Arc de Triomphe - come and get it; Thereís the Renault plant waiting for you. How I laugh when my thoughts turn towards it - All this nonsense they rush to believe in. Donít you fret, Iíve not left for abroad yet - And donít hope, ícos I donít intend leaving.
© Margaret & Stas Porokhnya. Translation, 2008