31 July 2011

No/Not - Another Translation / Нет - Другой перевод


You’re Russian? No, I am contagious.

My bio consists of missing pages.

I play a drunkard on the stage.

But yes, that’s where I came of age.

You’re Loseff? No, I am a Lifschutz,

the schmuck who always fell for stiff chicks

and pretty honors students smeared

with ink-stains, here and over here.

You’re human? No, I am a sliver,

a cracked Dutch tile out of context,

a weir, a mill, a rustic river –

God only knows what cometh next.

(Translation © Constantine Rusanov)

G.S. Smith's translation and the original are here.

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