“The one who loves must bear his cross” (“Любить иных – тяжелый крест”), Boris Pasternak


Pasternak likes to tease with near-rhymes. Part of the challenge here is to try to reproduce them…

The one who loves must bear his cross,
But you are lovely, unaffected,
Your secret charm on me’s not lost –
With life’s elixir it’s injected.

In spring dream’s whisper can be heard,
With news and truth the day is rippled.
Your family to you sense transferred.
Your airy thoughts are selfless stippled.

It’s no great matter now to wake,
At dawn to shake off words so wasted
And live then for the present’s sake –
Life needn’t be so complicated.


Любить иных – тяжелый крест,
А ты прекрасна без извилин,
И прелести твоей секрет
Разгадке жизни равносилен.

Весною слышен шорох снов
И шелест новостей и истин.
Ты из семьи таких основ.
Твой смысл, как воздух, бескорыстен.

Легко проснуться и прозреть,
Словесный сор из сердца вытрясть
И жить, не засоряясь впредь,
Все это – не большая хитрость.

Translation by Rupert Moreton

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