The Tenth Commandment
Don’t covet goods of other beings -
My Goodness, You’ve commanded so;
The limits of my will You know -
Am I to manage tender feelings?
I wish not to offend my friend.
His village I do not desire,
And for his steer I don’t aspire,
I’m gazing at it all, content:
His men, his house and his cattle,--
I do not wish them to be mine.
Supposing, though, his concubine
Is beautiful... I’ve lost the battle!
And if by chance his lady’s pretty
And gifted with an angel’s skin
Then God forgive me for my sin
Of being envious and greedy!
Who can command a heart like this?
Who is a slave to worthless trial?
Not love a loved one in denial?!--
Who can resist this heaven’s bliss?
I sigh from sadness and perceive,
But I must honor my conviction,
Scared to fulfill my heart’s ambition,
I’m silent... and alone I grieve.
By Alexander Pushkin
Translation by Andrey Kneller