Until the poet’s summoned thus
By great Apollo to be martyred,
Within the world of bustling fuss
He stays immersed and faint-hearted;
His lyre’s silent, hushed and cold,
His soul lies deep in wintry slumber,
Among the humble of the world
He is, for now, perhaps, most humble.
But let the Word divinely drop
And on his harking ears fall lightly,
The poet’s soul will rouse timely,
As though an eagle, woken up.
He’s bored of usual diversion,
He longs for simple speech instead,
And to the feet of idols worshiped
He never bows his proud head.
Full of sweet sounds and confusion,
He runs instead, untamed and brave,
Across the shores with endless waves,
Into the noisy grove’s seclusion...
By Alexander Pushkin
Translation by Andrey Kneller