The business of art lies just in this--to make that understood and felt which, in the form of an argument, might be incomprehensible and inaccessible. - Leo Tolstoy

My native land


I love my native land, but mine's a strange love, truly,
  And baffles reason. Neither glory bought
  With blood, nor, I record it duly,
A calm to proud faith wed, nor exploits brought
To life in tales and myths, and out the dim past taken
Within my heart a glad response awaken.

And yet I love, not knowing why they please,
Her rolling steppes, at once so chill and soundless,
Her wind-swept, rustling groves and forests boundless,
Her streams, by vernal floods made nigh as broad as
Reclining in a cart and for a warm bed sighing,
I love to bump along a country road at night
And meet with drowsy eye, the shadowed dark defying,
Of cheerless villages the lonely, trembling lights.
  Smoke coiling o'er a field of stubble,
  A string of wagons, homeward bound
  Or camping in the steppe, two humble
Young birches perched atop a mound,
  A barn with grain stocked to the ceiling,
Carved wooden shutters, roofs of thatch -
  All, all within me rouse a feeling
  Of joy.... And, too, I like to watch
  The village dancers stamping wildly
  And whistling of a Sunday, while
  Drunk muzhiks, sitting nearby idly,
  With talk night's spun-out hours beguile.

[English] [Russian TRANS | KOI8 | ALT | WIN | MAC | ISO5]
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Apukhtin A. N.
Baratynsky E.A.
Batyushkov K.N.
Benediktov V.
Del'vig A.
Fet A.
Grebeonka E.
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Mey L.
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Ogarev N.
Pavlova K.
Pleshcheev A.
Polonsky Y.
Pushkin A.
Rostopchina E.
Soloviev V.S.
Surikov I.
Tolstoy A.
Tyutchev F.
Yazykov N.M.
Zhukovsky V.
Zhemchuzhnikov A.