Poem "It’s not that I’m of God complaining" - T. Shevchenko (tr. by John Weir)

It’s not that I’m of God complaining
("Ne narikaiu ya na boha")

It’s not that I’m of God complaining
Or any other person blaming.
I just deceive myself. I trow.
And even sing the while I plow
My pauper field forlorn and fallow!
I sow the word. Good crops will follow
In days to come. Yet will they? No!
Myself alone, I have the feeling,
And no one else am I deceiving...
Unfold, my field, fold in furrows,
Black earth set for seeding!
Hill and valley plowed in furrows,
Sown with seeds of freedom!
Unfold, my field, cultivated.
Green with verdure covered,
With gold grain inseminated,
With good fortune watered!
So unfold in all directions,
Spread, my fertile meadow,

Seeded not with empty gestures
But with wisdom mellow!
Folks will come the crop to garner....
Oh harvest of plenty!...
So unfold, with green be covered,
My field poor and scanty!!
But am I not myself deceiving
With fancies of my own conceiving?
I am! Because it’s better so,
To strive, though it should be but vainly,
Than make my peace with bitter foes
And idly keep or God complaining!

Taras Shevchenko
"Ne narikaiu ya na boha"
("Не нарікаю я на бога")
I860, S.- Petersburg (С.- Петербург)

Translated by John Weir

Original publication:
Тарас Шевченко. Зібрання творів: У 6 т. — К., 2003. — Т. 2:
Поезія 1847-1861. — С. 355; 748

Taras Shevchenko. Selected poetry. Kiev, Dnipro, 1977, p. 312-313

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