by Yakov Petrovich Polonsky (1819 - 1898)
Translation © by Aleksey Berg

Что мне она! Не жена, не любовница
Language: Russian (Русский) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Что мне она! Не жена, не любовница
и не родная мне дочь!
Так отчего-ж её доля проклятая
спать не даёт мне всю ночь!

Спать не даёт оттого, что мне грезится
молодость в душной тюрьме.
Вижу я своды... окно за решеткою,
койку в сырой полутьме.

С койки глядят лихорадочно-знойные
очи без мысли и слёз,
с койки висят чуть не до полу темные
космы тяжелых волос.

Не шевеляться ни губы, ни бледные
руки на бледной груди,
слабо прижатые к сердцу без трепета
и без надежд впереди.

Что мне она! Не жена, не любовница
и не родная мне дочь!
Так отчего-ж её доля проклятая
спать не даёт мне всю ночь!

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Authorship

Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • ENG English (Aleksey Berg) , copyright © 2019, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 20
Word count: 107

What is she to me? She isn’t my wife, or...
Language: English  after the Russian (Русский) 
What is she to me? She isn’t my wife, or lover,
Or my own daughter!
Why then her accursed lot
Refuses to let me sleep all night?

It won’t let me sleep because I dream
Of my youth in a stuffy prison.
I see vaults..a window behind bars,
A cot in the dank twilight.

From the cot, feverishly torrid, her eyes
Look, without thoughts or tears,
From the cot, there hang almost to the floor,
Dark locks of her heavy hair.

Her lips do not move, nor do her pale
Hands on her chest,
They are lightly pressed to her heart, without trembling,
And without hopes ahead.

[What is she to me? She isn’t my wife, or lover,
Or my own daughter!
Why then her accursed lot
Refuses to let me sleep all night?]

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Authorship

  • Translation from Russian (Русский) to English copyright © 2019 by Aleksey Berg, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
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This text was added to the website: 2019-07-21
Line count: 20
Word count: 134