A stupid dream lambasted me - And maybe rightly: I seemed in it quite vague to be, And quite unsightly. I was a traitor, and I lied. I scraped and bowed... Id never even thought that I Could fall so low! And then, Id hit out with a fist With full force, madly, But at the last second, my wrist Would go all flabby. The vision would grow pale and dim, And sort of sear, But once I closed my eyes, the dream Would reappear! I never strode, I only minced, Not always forward. When threatened, I would flinch and wince, I cowered, a coward. Id fawn and grovel like a serf On power and evil, I was disgusting to myself - But waked not, even. Its mad! I slept, but I could hear My own groans, smothered. And yet - that dream had come to me, And not another. I still could hear, when I awaked, A groan drift faintly: The pain of coming-to was great, Relief was greater. The dream dissolved - and yet it seemed To be still goading. And what if it was not a dream But a foreboding? I quake, I do not see a gleam Of hope - but why? What was the truth in this odd dream? What was a lie? Im lucky if it was a sign, If I was warned. But what if in this dream of mine I was clairvoyant? A mirror of my real soul? No, not a mirror! But then - when I my dream recall, I writhe in horror. "He knew hed be a rat", theyll claim, "Hes ever at it." Id feel disgust, as in the dream In which I ratted. Suppose I cannot fill the breach - Beyond my power? The nightmare would be back in which I was a coward. But if Im told, "Man, join the crowd - Make your career!" Ill realise Im down and out: I was a seer.
Sergei Roy. Translation, 1990