Vladimir Visotsky – „Wolf Hunt”

The translation by Anna Bochman.

I struggle with all my strength and sinews,
but today is the same as yesterday:
They surrounded me, they surrounded!
They drive me joyously toward the numbers.

From behind the trees, double-barreled guns are fussing
There, hunters are hiding in the shadows;
The wolves tumble in the snow,
Having turned into a living target.

The wolf hunt is going on
For gray predators the grown and the pups.
The beaters shout and dogs bark til they vomit
Blood on the snow and red spots of the flags.

The hunters are not playing equal with the wolves,
But their hand will not tremble:
Having fenced off our freedom with flags,
They fire assuredly, for certain!
The wolf cannot break tradition:
It must have been that in childhood, as blind pups,
We were sucking mother-wolf
And sucked in that we cannot go beyond the flags.


Our feet and jaws are quick.
Why then leader, give us the answer!
Do we, hunted down, race towards the bullet
And not try to cross the forbidden?
The wolf should not, cannot do otherwise!
Here, my time comes to an end:
He to whom I am destined
Smiled and raised his gun


I came out of obedience and beyond the flags:
The thirst for life is stronger.
And I was happy to hear
The shouts of stunned humans behind me.
I struggle with all my strength and sinews,
but today is not the same as yesterday:
They surrounded me, they surrounded
But then are left there with nothing!





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