Poems and Songs of Vladimir Vysotsky. My Hamlet.

The Silly Dream.Adapted from Sergey Roy and Alec Vagapov’s
translations by Akbar Muhammad.

The silly dream lambasted me

With a big truncheon.

I seemed in it quite vague to be,

And quite unsightly.

While sleeping, I betrayed and lied,

And ofttimes bowed...

I never had a thought that I

Could fall so low!

I hammered foes with my fists,

And did it madly,

But it was just a kind of twist,

My hands were flabby.

Confused and muzzy, from the dream

I would arouse,

But then my eyes would grow dim,

And I would drowse.

I walked not fast, but dragged my feet

On the beaten road,

And I thought not of leaving it,

To find my own.

I truckled and crouched to the strong,

Stooped to the wayward.

I knew that all I did was wrong,

But lingered waking.

It’s rubbish! half asleep, I heard

My own murmur.

But it was me, in fact, who’ve gotten

This dream, not someone.

When I came round, I discerned

My murmur’s meaning.

I opened my eyes, and though it hurt,

It was relieving.

The dream dissolved — and yet it seems

To be still goading:

It, maybe, wasn’t a usual dream,

But a foreboding.

It gives me shakes as I ought to

Take a decision:

What was untrue and what was true

In this strange vision.

It’s great if it was just a sign,

A timely omen,

But what if in this dream of mine

I was clairvoyant?

Can what I dreamed tonight reflect

My thoughts? I doubt it!

But when I come to recollect,

I get dumbfounded.

And if it turns out that they judge,

“He knew all fully!” —

I’ll feel disgust just as that night

When I deluded.

Or, it’ll be proved that death in fire —

Beyond my power —

I’ll be ashamed just as that night

When I was coward.

Or, I’ll be told, “Sing on the beam —

You’ll be in clover!” —

It’ll also show that my strange dream

Was a real forecast.


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