József Attila: March (Március in English)
Mit ír a hírlap? Dúl a banda
Boldog vagyok: gyermek a lelkem;
Mert mi teremtünk szép, okos lányt
Soft rain is drifting like a smoke
across the tender fuzz of wheat.
As soon as the first stork appears
winter shrivels in retreat.
Spring comes, tunnelling a path
mined with exploding spikes of green.
The hut, wide open to the sun,
breathes hope and wood-dust sharp and clean.
The papers say that mercenaries
are ravaging the face of Spain.
A brainless general in China
chases peasants from hill to plain.
The cloth we use to wipe our boots
comes laundered back in blood again.
All round, big words bemuse and smooth
the voiceless miseries in men.
My heart is happy as a child's.
Flora loves me. But oh what arms
the beauty of love? For us, for all,
war stirs its withering alarms.
The bayonet contends in zeal
with the assaulting tank. Alone
I draw to us the force I need
against the fear I can't disown.
Men-women-all have sold themselves.
A heart? They keep it close as sin.
Hearts torn by hate-I pity you,
I shudder to see hatred win.
A little life on earth I have,
yet here I watch all life unfold -
O Flora, in this blaze of love
nothing surrenders to the cold!
May our daughter be beautiful
and good, our son be fearless, keen.
May they transmit some sparks beyond
star-clusters you and I have seen.
When this sun loses its great fire,
the children of our illumination
will launch towards infinity
their own galactic exploration.