“God Has Left”

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This is by Diana Arbenina of the Night Snipers, a prominent Russian rock group; Arbenina, unlike many critics of the war, has stayed in Russia, where her career has unsurprisingly suffered because of her position. I thought I’d pass along my poor attempt at translating the song; naturally, its impact is much greater in its original rhymed and metered form.

Each day there are fewer words,

And more ellipses.

Everything serious is now

Not important and not urgent.

There is no need to go faster,

Where the road is there’s now a trench;

The first one became bait

And the second fell as a target.

Each day there is less sun,

Less sleep and wind.

It’s no use asking

Not finding an answer.

God has left the city

And disappeared between the hills,

What’s happening,

What’s happening to you people?

Conscience is under anesthesia, and the soul …

The soul has gone blind.

Each day there are fewer chances,

Less honor, less.

All that’s left is

My eternal guitar

If it weren’t for it,

I’d have long since vanished.

Each day there are fewer friends,

The names burn up

As do the hopes that

Someone will fix all this.

Life flows like oil

The knife shreds the living flesh

And it doesn’t matter anymore

Who has left and who is at home.

It couldn’t be so,

Even if I lived it a thousand years, I wouldn’t believe it,

God has left and

The doors slammed behind him like gunshots.

God has left the city

And disappeared between the hills,

What will happen, people?

What will happen to us, people?

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