The Russian Review/Volume 1/February 1916/Night of Nights

Night of Nights.

(The Anniversary of the Curse.)

By Constantine Balmont.

Translated by P. Leonov.

In thirty years of life the present is the first,
That I no longer sing sweet flowers and dear caresses:
The Earth a prison seems which the dumb blue oppresses,
A bed of torture cruel, from which the blood-streams burst.

My spirit, blind and deaf, seems neither dead nor quick,
Awaiting constantly the pointed blades that stun us.
More, ever more, the pains and tortures shower upon us,
Our blood is used as wine for Devil's brood to lick.

And loving still the dews o'er which sweet perfumes hover,
And loving ever still the bright birds' murm'ring lay,
In vain I brush the blood from sacred sheets away.

The heights of Ararat the bloody fumes now cover,
The dreaded Night of Nights is whirling past apace,
Once more shall soon the blood burst forth from the Lord's


August 1, 1915.