Good night! (Dobranoc!), Adam Mickiewicz

AdamMickiewicz

Adam Mickiewicz (1798-1855) was Poland’s greatest poet. He was admired by Pushkin – who certainly recognised a kindred rakish spirit.

I don’t speak Polish, so this is rather cheeky. I tried to work out the metre, knowing only that the stress in Polish falls on the penultimate syllable, but ultimately settled on an iambic hexameter.

Good night! The day now closes – with it too diversion,
Enfold you azure wings of sleeping angel’s soft caresses.
Good night! May eyes now rest from lacrimation’s stresses.
Good night! May heart receive pacific dues’ conversion.

Good night! From all the times you’ve heard my glib orations
May yet they sound to you both delicate and charming,
May yet they tease your ear, when fade my thoughts disarming,
May still my image pass your pupils in migrations.

Good night! Now once again please look upon me sweetly,
To kiss your cheek allow me once, your slave assaulted!
Your breast remains unkissed – good night! Its wraps defeat me.

Good night! You’ve fled, succumbed to rage, the door you’ve bolted.
Good night I wish you at the door – it’s locked completely.
Good night again! I’d always see your sleep was jolted.

::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::

Dobranoc! już dziś więcej nie będziem bawili,
Niech snu anioł modrymi skrzydły Cię otoczy,
Dobranoc! niech odpoczną po łzach Twoje oczy,
Dobranoc! niech się serce pokojem zasili.

Dobranoc! z każdej ze mną przemówionej chwili
Niech zostanie dźwięk jakiś cichy i uroczy,
Niechaj gra w Twoim uchu, a gdy myśl zamroczy,
Niech się mój obraz sennym źrenicom przymili.

Dobranoc! obróć jeszcze raz na mnie oczęta,
Pozwól lica. – Dobranoc! – Chcesz na sługi klasnąć?
Daj mi pierś ucałować. – Dobranoc! zapięta.

– Dobranoc! już uciekłaś i drzwi chcesz zatrzasnąć.
Dobranoc Ci przez klamkę – niestety! zamknięta!
Powtarzając : dobranoc! nie dałbym Ci zasnąć.

Translation by Rupert Moreton

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