Just briefly, Iíll explain myself in verse, To tell you everything - I do not have the might. I was conceived, the proper way, in curse, - In sweat and tenseness of the wedding night. I knew, when separating from the earth - The higher, the more harsh we got. I walked towards the throne that I deserved And acted like an heir in line of blood. I knew that everything would be just as I ruled. And I was never at a loss and never down. My mates of sword and those I knew from school Were loyal, like their fathers to the crown. I never gave my speech a bit of thought. Into the wind, I threw my words with pleasance - Like to a leader, trust to me was brought By noble and high-ranking adolescents. We made the guards feel restless in the night, From us, like from a pox, the time grew worse. I slept on leather; ate right off the knife - With stirrups disciplined my wicked horse. "Long live the King!" - I had foreseen this cry, The destiny has branded me at birth. Around chased harnesses, I would get high, Iíd disregard abuse of books and words. Iíd smile with my lips while being pestered. My mystic stare, which used to burn in fury, Iíve learned to hide, raised by a happy jester. And now the jesterís dead: "Amen!" Poor Yurik. And yet I disapproved of any sharing - Of gains, rewards and privileges one has. Then, suddenly for life Iíve started caring And rode around the newly sprouted grass, I lost the thrill for hunting - lost its aim, I started to despise greyhounds and beagles. I sped my horse away from wounded game, And whipped the huntsmen and the beaters I watched our games with every single night Turn more and more into disgrace of time. And by the flowing rivers, I would hide And wash myself from staining filth and slime. I started to perceive, while growing duller, I even missed my householdís affair. Towards the people of this era I grew colder, I hid myself in books and lost all care. My brain, for wisdom greedy like a spider, Grasped everything: the immobility and motion. But what is wit when one cannot apply it? When all around thereís an opposing notion? With friends I tore the tread and I was free - The thread of Ariadne was but a scheme. I pondered on the words "to be or not to be", A problem with no answer as it seemed. The sea of grief was splashing in diffusion. We stood against it; we were sieving grain, And filtering the blurry resolution To a dilemma, which appeared inane. I heard my fatherís call when clamor stopped, Walked forth, - while lurking doubts loomed. The weight of heavy thoughts would pull me up And wings of flesh would drag me to my tomb. Into a weak alloy, Iíve melted with each day, And barely cool, it started to diffuse. Like others, Iíve spilled blood and just like they I was incapable my vengeance to refuse. The rising before death - was my collapse! Ophilia! My dear, I wonít decay... With killing, I have made myself, perhaps, An equal to the one with whom I lay. Iím Hamlet, I despised injustice and abuse! I did not give a damn about the crown! But in their eyes, I hungered fame and Iím accused Of sending rivals to the throne into the ground. The striking splash appears as an illusion And death through birth emerges from a side. And weíre still asking the deceitful solution Not finding the question to abide.
© Andrey Kneller. Translation, ?