Literary museum of Yanka Kupala,
people's writer of the Republic of Belarus (based in Minsk)
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YANKA KUPALA
WHO GOES THERE?
Who goes there, invading the swamps and the woods,
What shadowy throngs, what unknown multitudes? -
Byelorussians.
What is it, their spirits and hearts in turmoil,
They bear in their hands worn and hardened by toil? -
Injustice.
Why hold they this burden aloft as they do? -
They wish to expose it defiantly to
The bright light of day.
Who is it that taught them that this must be done?
Who roused them from slumber and goaded them on? -
Want and sorrow.
What seek they? What is it they clamour for, then? -
To be beasts of burden no longer, but men,
Unfettered and free.
1907.
Translated from byelorussian
by Irina ZHELEZNOVA.
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