"Don't Wed" - poem of Taras Shevchenko (translated into English by John Weir)


Don't Wed, poem of Taras Shevchenko. Translated by John Weir. Ne zhenysia na bahatii. Не женися на багатій.



Taras Shevchenko


Translated by John Weir

Don't wed a wealthy woman, friend,
She'll drive you from the house.
Don't wed a poor one either, friend,
Dull care will be your spouse.
Get hitched to carefree Cossack life
And share a Cossack fate:
If it be rags, let it be rags

What comes, that's what you take.
Then you'll have nobody to nag
Or try to cheer you up,
To fuss and fret and question you
What ails you and what's up.
When two misfortune share, they say,
It's easier to weep.
Not so: it's easier to cry
When no-one's there to see.

Taras Shevchenko, 
"Don't Wed"​
"Ne zhenysia na bahatii"
("Не женися на багатій")
1845, Myrhorod (Миргород)


Тарас Шевченко


Не женися на багатій,
Бо вижене з хати,
Не женися на убогій,
Бо не будеш спати.
Оженись на вольній волі,
На козацькій долі,
Яка буде, така й буде,
Чи гола, то й гола.
Та ніхто не докучає
І не розважає —
Чого болить і де болить,
Ніхто не питає.
Удвох, кажуть, і плакати
Мов легше неначе;
Не потурай: легше плакать,
Як ніхто не бачить.

(4 жовтня 1845 р., Миргород)


За матеріалами: Тарас Шевченко. Зібрання творів у 6 томах. Київ, 2003. Том 1: Поезія 1837-1847, стор. 286.

Translated by John Weir

Source: http://www.infoukes.com/

Original publication:
Taras Shevchenko. Zibrannia tvoriv: U 6 t. — K., 2003. — T. 1:
Poeziia 1837-1847. — S. 286; S. 714-715





More Taras Shevchenko's poems translated from Ukrainian into English by John Weir:

Title page of Taras Shevchenko. Selected poetry, 1977John Weir (Ivan Fedorovych Viv'yurskiy), a Canadian of the Ukrainian lineage, was a talented English-speaking translator of the second half of the 19ih century. During his life he translated 29 Shevchenko's poetic works, a prosaic foreword to the poem of «The Haidamaky», the narrative «The Artist», the poet’s autobiographic letter and some excerpts from his diary. John Weir, being a translator with the Ukrainian root, felt melodiousness of Shevchenko’s lines, understood a social foundation of the poet's artistic images. 


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