Like any other gang a-roamin’, We sang all night and many a vodka drained. We never liked Seriozhka Fomin, Because he always seemed so self-contained. Once at Seriozhka’s, as we sat about (It is true we always had reunions there), We learned that war had broken out As Molotov’s famed words came o’er the air. At the recruiting office I was told: "Your plant will defer you-you’re too old". But I enlisted. Seriozhka Fomin didn’t bother, Thanks to the professor, his father. While I shed my blood for country and for home, Something always burned me up inside: I was bleeding for Seriozhka Fomin, While he sal back and didn’t risk his hide.         At last the war was over. The heavy burden from our shoulders passed. I met Seriozhka Fomin. Lo! "Hero of the Soviet Union" on his breast.
© Misha Allen. Translation, 1968