My Translation of Marina Tsvetaeva’s Cycle “Girlfriend” – Part 4

Illustration: Devotion: the Two Girlfriends, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, 1895
You were too lazy to get dressed,
Too lazy to rise from the armchair.
- Although Your next day could be blessed
With my pure gaiety and laughter.

You were embarrassed most of all
To walk at night amid the snowfall.
- Although Your hours could be bold
With my excitement - jolly, youthful.

My darling, You have meant no harm,
So irreversibly benign.
- You were all innocence and charm,
I was the youth that passed You by.

October 25, 1914

Click to see the original poem

25 thoughts on “My Translation of Marina Tsvetaeva’s Cycle “Girlfriend” – Part 4

  1. Very glad you translated it, it’s lovely though I made the mistake of clicking the link and I wasn’t quite sure where the poem went….is it Russian ?


    1. Sorry for the late reply! Thank you for appreciating my translation – it is a great pleasure to see that my works attract new readers. 😉 Your guess is right! The original was written by Marina Tsvetaeva in Russian, and the link leads to her poem, so that the Russian-speaking viewers may have a chance of comparing my version to the original.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. This makes me so happy! Marina Tsvetaeva is scarcely known in the Western world, and I wish more people could appreciate her poetry. I suppose you have a very rare edition – good for you! ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t know if it’s a rare edition or not, I’ve owned it a long time. In my youth I really enjoyed reading Russian literature and poetry, including Tsvetaeva.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s fantastic! They are my favourite Russian authors, as well, along with Mikhail Bulgakov. It’s always a pleasure to find someone who had the same literary inspirations!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I wondered if we might have a try at writing an original work in response to a Tsvetaeva poem that we choose for each other, in any format we choose i.e prose, review, poem. Would you like to?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sounds like a great idea!

      One of my favourite poems (it has no official title, although some call it “Requiem”) starts like this:

      “The many fallen ones into the deepest
      Insatiable abyss!
      One of these days I’ll also vanish, guiltless,
      From earthly living bliss…”

      That would be the poem I chose for you (if it’s included in your edition, of course!) 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m really pleased that it’s a good choice for you. I’ll look forward to reading your response 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Just wanted to say thank you again for your wonderfully positive response to my writing. It’s hugely inspiring to me and I’m very grateful. ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

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