Vladimir Vysotsky. The Messenger.

ABOUT THE PROPHETS.

I. A Song about the Seeress Cassandra.

Besieged by Greeks, so many months Troy couldn’t be taken,
And it was said to be an unassailable town...
But had the Trojans listened to Cassandra’s statement,
Then, maybe, Troy wouldn’t have collapsed and fallen down.

Without stopping cried Cassandra, mad and raucous,
“I clearly see that soon in ruins will Troy quake!”
Despite the fact that people loathe those who forecast,
And at all times they meet their ending at the stake.

That night when hidden in the steed’s womb death flew out,
And Troy was captured by this ruthless, cruel master,
Somebody cried among the terror-stricken crowd,
“None but the sorceress has invited this disaster!”

Without stopping cried Cassandra, mad and raucous,
“I clearly see that soon in ruins will Troy quake!”
Despite the fact that people loathe those who forecast,
And at all times they meet their ending at the stake.

That night of massacre, when all was in disorder,
When all the prophecies came true and blood was chilling,
The mob was ready to commit its usual murder,
As mobs don’t think too long before they get to killing.

Without stopping cried Cassandra, mad and raucous,
“I clearly see that soon in ruins will Troy quake!”
Despite the fact that people loathe those who forecast,
And at all times they meet their ending at the stake.

Cassandra’s ending wasn’t appalling, ye may sneer—
Some hungry Greek happened to discover her abode,
And started using her at once not as a seer,
But as a woman in a very common mode.

Without stopping cried Cassandra, mad and raucous,
“I clearly see that soon in ruins will Troy quake!”
Despite the fact that people loathe those who forecast,
And at all times they meet their ending at the stake.

1967.

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