The Tempest (Mickiewicz)

The Tempest
by Adam Mickiewicz, translated by Jarek Zawadzki
1500049The TempestJarek ZawadzkiAdam Mickiewicz

The sail is torn, the rudder bursts, the waters roar,
All people yell, the pumps release a baleful wail,
The ropes yanked out of deckhands’ palms: we’ve lost the sail!
Lo! Sun in blood-shade setting, hope there is no more.
The gale in triumph howls, and on the sodden hills
That rise above the chaos of the fatal sea,
A genius of death ascended, and now he
Assails the fortress long destroyed and further kills.
Some on the deck lie dying, drowning in despair;
Some fall in neighbor’s arms and sadly say good bye;
Some pray to drive the death away, some pray to die.
One passenger sat calmly in a corner there,
And thought: Oh happy he who’s swooned amid this hell,
Or prays or knows a man to say the last farewell!

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This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1929.

This work may be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.

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