To the Sea

Farewell, free element, o Sea!
For one last time I watch your tide
Roll azure waves in front of me
And shine in beauty full of pride.

Like farewell mutter of a friend
Deserted for a colder clime,
The sad, inviting call you send
Resounds to me for one last time.

Beloved region of my soul!
How often, next to your shoreline,
Mute and beclouded I would stroll,
Borne with my ultimate design!

How much I loved your deep replies,
Your chasm's voice, your splashes' chime,
And silence at the evening time,
And gusts of fanciful surprise!

Tradesmen or fishers' humble boat
Glides bravely, guarded by your will,
Amid the waves, for days afloat;
But you turn rough, impregnable —
And schools of ships go down your throat.

I never got to say goodnight
To this unmoving, boring shore,
Greet you with surges of delight
And level my poetic flight
Along your crests forevermore.

You called, you waited... but the chain
And mighty passion held me bound;
My soul went out to you in vain;
Still, I remained upon the ground.

What to regret? Where, in distress,
Would I now set my path and goal?
One object in your wilderness
Could still affect my frigid soul.

One lofty crag, a glorious tomb...
There stately memories dwelled on
And plunged in sleep of cold and gloom:
There faded great Napoleon.

Amid great pangs he rested there.
And like a thunder afterwards,
Another genius left us bare,
Another master of our hearts.

He fled, bewailed by liberty,
Bequeathing to the world his palms.
Grow agitated, roar, o sea:
Of you, of you he sang his psalms.

Your image was designed on him,
In spirit he was made the same:
Like you, dynamic, deep and grim.
Like you, impossible to tame.

The world grew empty... Ocean, where,
What shore now would you cast me at?
Same all around the earthly share:
Where falls a drop of welfare, there
Guards preaching or an autocrat.

Farewell then, Sea! I won't forget
Your beauty full of solemn power;
Long, long will I be hearing yet
Your rumble at an evening hour.

To silent wilderness, to groves
I'll carry over, filled with you,
Your crags and waves, your bays and coves,
And shine, and shade, and murmuring blue.

Translated by Genia Gurarie

A.S. Pushkin. To the Sea (“Farewell, free element, o Sea!..”). Translated by Genia Gurarie// Alexander Pushkin. Collected Works: Parallel Russian Text and English Translation.
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