Nikola Vaptsarov

(7 December 1909 - 23 July 1942 / Bulgaria)

Country Chronicle - Poem by Nikola Vaptsarov

A man on the radio
hotly debates.
With whom?
I do not know,
but perhaps - with the people.
Let the man talk,
isn't that what he's paid for!

'The power of the state
and state authority
stand by ready
to guard your interests.
Down with slogans!
Drop your banners!
Everyone's satisfied,

A man in the coffee-shop
spits in disgust,
treads the gob firmly
into the dust,
looks around, says with a prudent nod:
'They think can trick us,
the sons of bitches!
But has God written
in Holy Sculpture -
'The voice of the people is the voice of God?''

'You're right!'
said a hungry
shivering youth.
'Wasn't that the lie
they told you then
in nineteen hundred
and fifteen?

'But today
if they ask us to die,
if they force us to face
bullet fire,
even fools will agree
that it's high time
had our say.

'And here's my belief,
for our bread
is blacker than grief,
and the oil jar
is empty:
We've only one slogan -
Down with the terror!
Ally with the U.S.S.R.

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Poem Submitted: Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Poem Edited: Wednesday, July 23, 2014

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