Sunday, March 15, 2015

Marina Tsvetaeva - Under a Velvet Throw

* * *
Remembering the last night vision,
Caressed under a velvet throw.
What happen then? And who was winning? 
Who’s overthrown?

Rethinking everything all over, 
Tormented over and above,
I could not name it, could not know it,
Or was it love?

Who was the hunter, who was hunted?
The devilish confusing plot!
What did the fluffy kitty fathom
While it have purred?

And in that battle of willpowers
Who was a toy? And in whose hand?
Whose heart - was yours or mine entirely - 
Skipped, raced and sped?

And yet I’m mystified - What was it?
Why is this longing and this woe?
I still don’t know: Have I won it?
Or have I lost?

October 23, 1914

Translated by Dina Belyayeva

Russian original

The poem was popularized as a song form 1984 movie A Cruel Romance



  1. I am little much confused by reading your article. Is it a story of Marina Tsvetaeva? I really didn't hear her name before. I think it is a sad history and i want to salute to her. Please clear it so i can understand easily.

    1. Marina Tsvetaeva, as many other Russian poets from early 20th century lived in the era of tremendous social, cultural and political upheaval, marked by horrendous violence, famine, betrayal, and personal loss. Even their poems that preceded the Russian revolution of 1917 and the brutal civil war that followed presaged the inevitable suffering.

      What I provided here are a few translations of Marina's poems. The biography link is to the Wikipedia article about Marina Tsvetaeva and it is a collective effort of many contributors who sourced the biographical facts from original documents and accounts of contemporaries.

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