Translated from Nima Yushij, 1941
Hey you, sitting on the shore, laughing in joy,
someone is dying in the waves.
Someone is constantly beating with his hands and legs.
On this agitated, dark, heavy sea you see
when you’re drunk
with the thought of defeating your enemy,
when you wonder in vain
that you’ve held hands with the powerless
to bring forth better power,
when you fasten
your resolution on your belt …
When else shall I say?
In vain someone wastes his life in waves.
Hey you, feasting at the table on the shore,
with bread on your plate, clothes on your body.
Someone from the water beckons you,
beating the heavy tide with his exhausted hands,
mouth gaping with wide open fear-filled eyes,
seeing your shadows from afar
swallowing water in that dark depth,
getting impatient minute by minute.
now his hands, now his legs.
he’s watching this ancient world from afar,
crying in hope of being saved.
Hey you, watching the calm shore!
The wave beats hard on the silent shore,
falls and spreads like a drunkard, unconscious,
then recedes, shouting. From afar the voice is heard:
And the wind sounds ever sharper.
In the wind his shouts are ever louder
from close and far waters.
It resounds in our ears: