Speaking In Tongues
Guided by Voices

Sergey Yesenin

Translated by Yelena Romanova

* * *

The golden birch-wood ceased its murmur
In jolly chatter of its leaves,
Sad cranes in their grave retreat to distant corners
No more lament for any soul.

Who should be mourned? Everybody's just a wanderer:
We come, then leave this world just passing by.
Only the hemp-field muses about all departed,
With the pond reflecting the full moon and the sky.

I stand alone in the naked chilly plain,
As cranes are taken by the wind away
The memories of youth flood my brain,
But I don't mourn those festive days,

The lilac blossom of my candid heart
And the years of life gone down the drain.
Red ash-berries glare in the park,
Nobody can be warmed by their cold flames.

Their fire won't burn the barren grass,
The clusters will not be scorched.
Like trees that lose their golden brass
My sad words shed as they emerge.

And if time with the wind of the years
Heaps my words into a mass of waste,
Put it this way… the golden birch-wood
Has ceased its dainty chatter.