Mother [author: George Coşbuc; Translation: Octavian Cocos] Poem by Octavian Cocos

Mother [author: George Coşbuc; Translation: Octavian Cocos]



Flows down the water of the spring,
The roar is all prevailing,
And in the evening poplars sing
The everlasting wailing.
The braided paths, narrow and bare,
Towards the mill are going
I see you, mother, you are there
Your shack is slightly glowing!

You spin. The fire's burning pale
And in the hearth are dying
Three splinters broken from the rail
And their flame is sighing.
From time to time, it rises bright,
Then falls, worn-out by labour,
Blending the shadows with the light
At corners, in the chamber.

Two girls are sitting next to you
And spin - the work is numbing;
They have no father, it is true,
And George, he is not coming.
A tale with dragons and with birds
A girl begins recalling
You listen carefully her words
And then your thoughts are rolling.

The thread breaks often, you are tense,
And look a bit despairing
You mutter words, which have no sense,
And somewhere out you're staring.
You drop the spindle, but don't speak,
By threads you are surrounded,
To lift it up you do not seek,
The two girls are astounded.

O, no! There is no doubt at all!
You jump, you've heard a clatter,
You look outside and wait a call,
A girl says: „What's the matter? "
„It's nothing...Maybe just a bird",
You give an explanation,
But every uttered gentle word
Is wail and lamentation.

After a moment, looking down,
Your voice, which now is stronger,
Says: „I shall die", and then you frown,
„I am not me any longer..."
What was I thinking? It's insane,
Your brother to be coming,
I thought I've heard him at the pane
How knocks and how is humming.

It wasn't him! ... But if he came,
My life would be extended,
Yet he's away, I cannot claim
To meet, my life has ended.
And maybe God thus has some fun
Or fate, has left me crying,
Because I cannot see my son
And soon I shall be dying!

Outside is windy, clouds appear
It's dark until tomorrow,
The girls are sleeping, they don't fear -
But you are full of sorrow,
And near the hearth you sit and cry:
He's gone, I love him dearly,
And then you close your weary eye
In dreams to see me clearly!

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