Vladimir Vysotsky. The Hill.

The Alarm Bell.Translated by Akbar Muhammad.

Listen, a bell tolls somewhere:
 

 
 it says of a high day

Or, perhaps, a misfortune has arrived.

Muffling up the lyre,
 

 
 it sounds far and wide now,

Has the ringer gone out of his mind?

No, the ringer isn’t sick,
 

 
 from the belfry, hears he

How, with firm step, Fate persistently walks.

’Stead of towns and villages,
 

 
 there are only cinders,

The jackboots trample on the standing crops.

There are no more forests
 

 
 warmed the Globe in old days,

Now the fire warms our Mother Earth!

There’ll be, when all’s burned down,
 

 
 nothing in a circle,

And again from nothing we’ll go forth.

Don’t think it’s a slumber,
 

 
 it goes on around us —

The black smoke, burnt out ground and decay.

From above, the ringer
 

 
 sees the picture clearly —

’Cause of horror, he’s turned fully gray.

1973.

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