The sport of lifting weights is rather old, Remember as one famous ancient Greek Picked up his rival in a deadly hold And thrust him down, broken and weak! A round bar like someoneís neck Iím squeezing; What will the crowd do - applaud or hiss? I lift Antaeus off the ground, wheezing, Like Hercules had done in ancient Greece. I am not as graceful as a mustang, Iím uncouth, my feet are never fleet; And a heavy, cumbrous barís my master, And my partner whom I have to beat! To lift this mass without elevators - You wouldnít wish your enemy to get! Approaching this heavy apparatus My heart is heavy - I can just fall flat! We both look as though made of metal, But only it is real stainless steel; I trod so long to win my gold medal That I am now down at the heel. I am not as graceful as a mustang, Iím uncouth, my feet are never fleet; And a heavy, cumbrous barís my master And my partner whom I have to beat! ďThe weight is taken!Ē - sounds in the air, You love this call, itís really a treat! It is a treat - but itís, of course, unfair: The weightís above and you are under it! Thus, victory may turn into frustration - To win this fight you shouldnít go far: You lift the weight without contemplation And throw down this backbreaking bar! I am not as graceful as a mustang, Iím uncouth, my feet are never fleet; And a heavy, cumbrous barís my master And my partner whom I have to beat! The bar crawls up - its tonnage doesnít matter! It rips my muscles just before the bell... And someone cried (they always know better!): ďDonít be a fool, just drop this bar to hell!Ē Another second - and the barís defeated! My iron godís put down with dispatch... The move that Iíve successfully completed Has got a brief and bristly name - a snatch!
© George Tokarev. Translation, 2001
Edited by Robert Titterton