October 15, 2010

A Dacian Prayer, by Mihai Eminescu

Mihai Eminescu (15.01.1850 - 15.06.1889) was the poet who concentrated the poetical soul of Romanian people and transformed Romanian poetry, being often named the "Luceafãrul" of Romanian poetry, due to his outstanding poem wrote in 1883 "Luceafarul/ The Evening Star". "A Dacian's Prayer / Rugaciunea unui dac" is just another great poem wrote by him in 1879. 


Head
Head of Decebal, Dacian King, sculpture near Danube River on Mraconia Valey, Romania

A Dacian's Prayer
     verses by Mihai Eminescu, National and Universal Poet

When death did not exist, nor yet eternity,
Before the seed of life had first set living free,
When yesterday was nothing, and time had not begun,
And one included all things, and all was less than one,
When sun and moon and sky, the stars, the spinning earth
Were still part of the things that had not come to birth,
And You quite lonely stood... I ask myself with awe,
Who is this mighty God we bow ourselves before.

Ere yet the Gods existed already He was God
And out of endless water with fire the lightning shed;
He gave the Gods their reson, and joy to earth did bring,
He brought to man forgiveness, and set salvation's spring
Lift up your hearts in worship, a song of praise enfreeing,
He is the death of dying, the primal birth of being.

To him I owe my eyes that I can see the dawn,
To him I owe my heart wherein is pity born;
Whene'er I hear the tempest, I hear him pass along
Midst multitude of voices raised in a holy song;
And yet of his great mercy I beg still one behest:
That I at last be taken to his eternal rest.

Be curses on the fellow who would my praise acclaim,
But blessings upon him who does my soul defame;
Believe no matter whom who slanders my renown,
Give power to the arm that lifts to strike me down;
Let him upon the earth above all others loom
Who steals away the stone that lies upon my tomb.

Hunted by humanity, let me my whole life fly
Until I feel from weeping my very eyes are dry;
Let everyone detest me no matter where I go,
Until from persecution myself I do not know;
Let misery and horror my heart transform to stone,
That I may hate my mother, in whose love I have grown;
Till hating and deceiving for me with love will vie,
And I forget my suffering, and learn at last to die.

Dishonoured let me perish, an outcast among men;
My body less than worthy to block the gutter then,
And may, o God of mercy, a crown of diamonds wear
The one who gives my heart the hungry dogs to tear,
While for the one who in my face does callous fling a clod
In your eternal kingdom reserve a place, o God.

Thus only, gracious Father, can I requitance give
That you from your great bounty vouched me the joy to live;
To gain eternal blessings my head I do not bow,
But rather ask that you in hating compassion show.
Till comes at last the evening, your breath will mine efface,
And into endless nothing I go, and leave no trace.


(1879, Translated by Corneliu M. Popescu, tragically died in 1977 earthquake)

Sfinx, megalithic natural sculpture at 2290m altitude in Bucegi Mountains, Romania
Sfinx, megalithic natural sculpture at 2290m altitude in Bucegi Mountains, Romania

The original poem wrote by Mihai Eminescu in  Romanian is:

Rugăciunea unui dac

Pe când nu era moarte, nimic nemuritor,
Nici sâmburul luminii de viaţă dătător,
Nu era azi, nici mâine, nici ieri, nici totdeuna,
Căci unul erau toate şi totul era una;
Pe când pământul, cerul, văzduhul, lumea toată
Erau din rândul celor ce n-au fost niciodată,
Pe-atunci erai Tu singur, încât mă-ntreb în sine-mi:
Au cine-i zeul cărui plecăm a noastre inemi?

El singur zeu stătut-au nainte de-a fi zeii
Şi din noian de ape puteri au dat scânteii,
El zeilor dă suflet şi lumii fericire,
El este-al omenimei izvor de mântuire:
Sus inimile voastre! Cântare aduceţi-i,
El este moartea morţii şi învierea vieţii!

Şi el îmi dete ochii să văd lumina zilei,
Şi inima-mi umplut-au cu farmecele milei,
În vuietul de vânturi auzit-am al lui mers
Şi-n glas purtat de cântec simţii duiosu-i viers,
Şi tot pe lângă-acestea cerşesc înc-un adaos:
Să-ngăduie intrarea-mi în vecinicul repaos!

Să blesteme pe-oricine de mine-o avea milă,
Să binecuvânteze pe cel ce mă împilă,
S-asculte orice gură, ce-ar vrea ca să mă râdă,
Puteri să puie-n braţul ce-ar sta să mă ucidă,
Ş-acela între oameni devină cel întâi
Ce mi-a răpi chiar piatra ce-oi pune-o căpătâi.

Gonit de toată lumea prin anii mei să trec,
Pân' ce-oi simţi că ochiu-mi de lacrime e sec,
Că-n orice om din lume un duşman mi se naşte,
C-ajung pe mine însumi a nu mă mai cunoaşte,
Că chinul şi durerea simţirea-mi a-mpietrit-o,
Că pot să-mi blestem mama, pe care am iubit-o -
Când ura cea mai crudă mi s-a părea amor...
Poate-oi uita durerea-mi şi voi putea să mor.

Străin şi făr' de lege de voi muri - atunce
Nevrednicu-mi cadavru în uliţă l-arunce,
Ş-aceluia, Părinte, să-i dai coroană scumpă,
Ce-o să asmuţe câinii, ca inima-mi s-o rumpă,
Iar celui ce cu pietre mă va izbi în faţă,
Îndură-te, stăpâne, şi dă-i pe veci viaţă!

Astfel numai, Părinte, eu pot să-ţi mulţumesc
Că tu mi-ai dat în lume norocul să trăiesc.
Să cer a tale daruri, genunchi şi frunte nu plec,
Spre ură şi blestemuri aş vrea să te înduplec,
Să simt că de suflarea-ţi suflarea mea se curmă
Şi-n stingerea eternă dispar fără de urmă! 


Luceafarul: Poemul suprem al literaturii romane (Clasici: Eminescu)

6 comments:

Kebeni said...

that is an amazing carving in the rock face

Kirsten said...

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SalemMomma said...

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