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Cvetok, 'Die Blümlein' VWV: 1018

Cvetok, 'Die Blümlein'

Cvetok zasokhshij, bezukhannyj,
Zabytyj v knige vizhu ja,
I vot uzhe mechtoju strannoj
Dusha napolnilas' moja.
Gde cvel, kogda, kakoj vesnoju?
I dolgo l' cvel, i sorvan kem?
Chuzhoj, znakomoj li rukoju?
I polozhen sjuda zachem?
Na pamjat' nezhnogo l' svidan'ja
Ili razluki rokovoj,
Il' odinokogo guljan'ja
V tishi polej, v teni lesnoj?
I zhiv li tot, i ta zhiva li?
I nynche gde ikh ugolok?
Ili oni uzhe uvjali,
Kak sej nevedomyj cvetok?

The flower

I see a flower – withered, scentless –
Forgotten in the pages of a book,
And suddenly my soul is filled
With a strange dream.
Where did it bloom, and when, and in which spring?
Did it bloom for long, and who plucked it?
Was it a foreign or a familiar hand?
And why was it placed here?
To mark the memory of a tender meeting,
Or perhaps a fateful parting,
Or a solitary stroll
Through silent fields or darkling wood?
Does he still live – does she?
If so, then where is their abode?
Or have they both faded away,
Like this unknown little flower?

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Pauline Viardot was a leading nineteenth-century French mezzo-soprano, pedagogue, and composer of Spanish descent.

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Alexander Sergeyevich Pushkin (6 June 1799 – 10 February 1837) was a Russian poet, playwright, and novelist of the Romantic era who is considered by many to be the greatest Russian poet and the founder of modern Russian literature.

Pushkin was born into Russian nobility in Moscow. His father, Sergey Lvovich Pushkin, belonged to Pushkin noble families. A maternal great-grandfather was African-born general Abram Petrovich Gannibal. He published his first poem at the age of 15, and was widely recognized by the literary establishment by the time of his graduation from the Tsarskoye Selo Lyceum. Upon graduation from the Lycee, Pushkin recited his controversial poem "Ode to Liberty", one of several that led to his being exiled by Tsar Alexander the First. While under the strict surveillance of the Tsar's political police and unable to publish, Pushkin wrote his most famous play, the drama Boris Godunov. His novel in verse, Eugene Onegin, was serialized between 1825 and 1832.

Pushkin was fatally wounded in a duel with his brother-in-law, Georges-Charles de Heeckeren d'Anthès, also known as Dantes-Gekkern, a French officer serving with the Chevalier Guard Regiment, who attempted to seduce the poet's wife, Natalia Pushkina.

Taken from Wikipedia. Read the full article here.

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