Page:Poems, Alexander Pushkin, 1888.djvu/37

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31
Introduction: Critical.

wards so pathetically tormented him long. He began with "Questionings:"—

"Useless gift, accidental gift,
Life, why art thou given me?
Or, why by fate mysterious
To torture art thou doomed?


"Who with hostile power me
Out has called from the nought?
Who my soul with passion thrilled,
Who my spirit with doubt has filled?..."

And he continues with "Sleeplessness:"—

"I cannot sleep, I have no light;
Darkness 'bout me, and sleep is slow;
The beat monotonous alone
Near me of the clock is heard
Of the Fates the womanish babble,
Of sleeping night the trembling,
Of life the mice-like running-about,—
Why disturbing me art thou?
What art thou, О tedious whisper?
The reproaches, or the murmur
Of the day by me misspent?
What from me wilt thou have?
Art thou calling or prophesying?
Thee I wish to understand,
Thy tongue obscure I study now."

13. And this demon gives him no rest, even long after he had found the answer,—that the meaning of Life is in Work. Solve the problem of life? Live, and you solve it; and to live means to do. But that work