You are on the edge of icy steep Staring at the mountain heights intently. While the mountains seem to be asleep Breathing now with violence now gently. But they keep an eye on you as though You’d been granted safety and protection, They are sending cracks and slips of snow As a sign of warning and prevention. For the mountains know that this is hell, Smoke has filled the passes with commotion... You were young then, and you couldn’t tell Roaring snow-slide from a bomb explosion. If you cried for help, the mountains would bring Your appeals back to the cliffs and dingles, Which would spread about the ravine Blowing in the wind like radar signals. When you fought for passes, shedding blood, Chain of mountains would be your loyal helper, Every stone would be your body-guard, And the rocks would offer you a shelter. It’s a lie that wise men never go Up the hill if they can walk around. You were welcomed by the granite, ice and snow And the fog would spread low on the ground. Should you get your everlasting in the snow, Mountain ridges, like your near and dear, Will bend over you. They’ll be, I know, Your unbreakable memorial here.
© Alec Vagapov. Translation, 1999