Victor Sklyarov

Victor Sklyarov
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The English language has been my love since school. I was fascinated by the diversity of meanings that may be implied in one phrase. I discovered it reading Translator’s Notebooks – a brilliant periodical with poetry and prose translations criticism. School was quite a chore to me and instead of making lessons I read books only slightly related to subjects studied: Dostoyevskiy, Shakespeare (in Russian translation – it was next to impossible to find his works in English at that time) , books on theory of relativity, history, etc. And, of course, I wrote poems in Russian. Later I burnt them all. Once I rhymed my composition. It was then that I made my first translation – Hamlet’s soliloquy. ... more »

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Best Poem of Victor Sklyarov

Lost Empire

I mourn the non-existing country I was born in
Though ‘t was a phantom of Empire I belong to
The alien land where I reside at dawning
Of the millennium is wrongful.

This can’t be Russia. It’s some aggregation
Of perverts, thieves, whores and con men in power
Sitting on branches of the wizened tree on ration
Of the dead souls that emerged last hour.

They are insatiable, their name is Legion
They are the law and profit’s their religion.
They buy and sell and cheat -
That’s their only treat.

This can’t last long,
Or am I wrong?

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