I had forty surnames, I had seven passports, I loved seventy women, I had two hundred enemies. But I am not sorry! How much did I endeavour. How much did I aspire - Never mind, as to bawl, Somebody was there. And though my way is long and wearisome, And though I deserved praise - About me will be written no obituary On the last page in the corner. But I am not sorry! How much did I aspire, How much did I endeavour, - Somebody was there - And to get drunk with. And though I believed in the light - For instance in our Soviet people, - For me there wonít be erected a memorial in the public garden Somewhere at the Petrovski gate. But I am not sorry! How much did I endeavour, How much did I aspire - Never mind that I took to drink, Never mind that I went downhill. I exude songs about dramas And about the life of pickpockets - You donít encounter my surname in advertising Of the popular variety singers. But I am not sorry! How much did I endeavour, How much did I aspire, - I was always caught - And sat all the time. It is said that everything will be alright. Stop drinking? .. It is oviously not my fate, Nevertheless they wonít mint me On the coin instead of a coat of arms. But I am not sorry! So what for do I endeavour? So what for do I aspire? To look into everything - One needs to drink heavily.
© Elisabeth Jelinek. Translation, 2018