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Она перебежала через улицу, убежала из его жизни, не оглянувшись во второй раз. Может, так было и лучше.
Robert Browning

ROBERT BROWNING (1812-1889)
(Роберт Браунинг)

CHILDE ROLAND TO THE DARK TOWER CAME
(Чайлд Роланд к Темной Башне пришел)

  • Original Text: Robert Browning, Men and Women, 2 vols. (1855.) Rev. 1863.
  • First Publication Date: 1855.
  • Representative Poetry On-line: Editor, I. Lancashire; Publisher, Web Development Group, Inf. Tech. Services, Univ. of Toronto Lib.
  • Edition: 3RP 3.146. й F. E. L. Priestley and I. Lancashire, Dept. of English (Univ. of Toronto), and Univ. of Toronto Press 1997.

(See Edgar's song in Shakespeare's King Lear.)

1     My first thought was, he lied in every word,
2         That hoary cripple, with malicious eye
3         Askance to watch the working of his lie
4     On mine, and mouth scarce able to afford
5     Suppression of the glee that pursed and scored
6         Its edge, at one more victim gained thereby.

7     What else should he be set for, with his staff?
8         What, save to waylay with his lies, ensnare
9         All travellers who might find him posted there,
10   And ask the road? I guessed what skull-like laugh
11   Would break, what crutch 'gin write my epitaph
12       For pastime in the dusty thoroughfare,

13   If at his counsel I should turn aside
14       Into that ominous tract which, all agree,
15       Hides the Dark Tower. Yet acquiescingly
16   I did turn as he pointed: neither pride
17   Nor hope rekindling at the end descried,
18       So much as gladness that some end might be.

19   For, what with my whole world-wide wandering,
20       What with my search drawn out thro' years, my hope
21       Dwindled into a ghost not fit to cope
22   With that obstreperous joy success would bring,
23   I hardly tried now to rebuke the spring
24       My heart made, finding failure in its scope.

25   As when a sick man very near to death
26       Seems dead indeed, and feels begin and end
27       The tears and takes the farewell of each friend,
28   And hears one bid the other go, draw breath
29   Freelier outside ("since all is o'er," he saith,
30       "And the blow fallen no grieving can amend";)

31   While some discuss if near the other graves
32       Be room enough for this, and when a day
33       Suits best for carrying the corpse away,
34   With care about the banners, scarves and staves:
35   And still the man hears all, and only craves
36       He may not shame such tender love and stay.

37   Thus, I had so long suffered in this quest,
38       Heard failure prophesied so oft, been writ
39       So many times among "The Band"--to wit,
40   The knights who to the Dark Tower's search addressed
41   Their steps--that just to fail as they, seemed best,
42       And all the doubt was now--should I be fit?

43   So, quiet as despair, I turned from him,
44       That hateful cripple, out of his highway
45       Into the path he pointed. All the day
46   Had been a dreary one at best, and dim
47   Was settling to its close, yet shot one grim
48       Red leer to see the plain catch its estray.

49   For mark! no sooner was I fairly found
50       Pledged to the plain, after a pace or two,
51       Than, pausing to throw backward a last view
52   O'er the safe road, 'twas gone; grey plain all round:
53   Nothing but plain to the horizon's bound.
54       I might go on; nought else remained to do.

55   So, on I went. I think I never saw
56       Such starved ignoble nature; nothing throve:
57       For flowers--as well expect a cedar grove!
58   But cockle, spurge, according to their law
59   Might propagate their kind, with none to awe,
60         You'd think; a burr had been a treasure-trove.

61   No! penury, inertness and grimace,
62       In some strange sort, were the land's portion. "See
63       Or shut your eyes," said Nature peevishly,
64   "It nothing skills: I cannot help my case:
65   'Tis the Last Judgment's fire must cure this place,
66       Calcine its clods and set my prisoners free."

67   If there pushed any ragged thistle-stalk
68       Above its mates, the head was chopped; the bents
69       Were jealous else. What made those holes and rents
70   In the dock's harsh swarth leaves, bruised as to baulk
71   All hope of greenness? 'tis a brute must walk
72       Pashing their life out, with a brute's intents.

73   As for the grass, it grew as scant as hair
74       In leprosy; thin dry blades pricked the mud
75       Which underneath looked kneaded up with blood.
76   One stiff blind horse, his every bone a-stare,
77   Stood stupefied, however he came there:
78       Thrust out past service from the devil's stud!

79   Alive? he might be dead for aught I know,
80       With that red gaunt and colloped neck a-strain,
81       And shut eyes underneath the rusty mane;
82   Seldom went such grotesqueness with such woe;
83   I never saw a brute I hated so;
84       He must be wicked to deserve such pain.

85   I shut my eyes and turned them on my heart.
86       As a man calls for wine before he fights,
87       I asked one draught of earlier, happier sights,
88   Ere fitly I could hope to play my part.
89   Think first, fight afterwards--the soldier's art:
90       One taste of the old time sets all to rights.

91   Not it! I fancied Cuthbert's reddening face
92       Beneath its garniture of curly gold,
93       Dear fellow, till I almost felt him fold
94   An arm in mine to fix me to the place
95   That way he used. Alas, one night's disgrace!
96       Out went my heart's new fire and left it cold.

97   Giles then, the soul of honour--there he stands
98       Frank as ten years ago when knighted first.
99       What honest men should dare (he said) he durst.
100 Good--but the scene shifts--faugh! what hangman hands
101 In to his breast a parchment? His own bands
102     Read it. Poor traitor, spit upon and curst!

103 Better this present than a past like that;
104     Back therefore to my darkening path again!
105     No sound, no sight as far as eye could strain.
106 Will the night send a howlet or a bat?
107 I asked: when something on the dismal flat
108     Came to arrest my thoughts and change their train.

109 A sudden little river crossed my path
110     As unexpected as a serpent comes.
111     No sluggish tide congenial to the glooms;
112 This, as it frothed by, might have been a bath
113 For the fiend's glowing hoof--to see the wrath
114     Of its black eddy bespate with flakes and spumes.

115 So petty yet so spiteful! All along
116     Low scrubby alders kneeled down over it;
117     Drenched willows flung them headlong in a fit
118 Of mute despair, a suicidal throng:
119 The river which had done them all the wrong,
120     Whate'er that was, rolled by, deterred no whit.

121 Which, while I forded,--good saints, how I feared
122     To set my foot upon a dead man's cheek,
123     Each step, or feel the spear I thrust to seek
124 For hollows, tangled in his hair or beard!
125 --It may have been a water-rat I speared,
126     But, ugh! it sounded like a baby's shriek.

127 Glad was I when I reached the other bank.
128     Now for a better country. Vain presage!
129     Who were the strugglers, what war did they wage,
130 Whose savage trample thus could pad the dank
131 Soil to a plash? Toads in a poisoned tank,
132     Or wild cats in a red-hot iron cage--

133 The fight must so have seemed in that fell cirque.
134     What penned them there, with all the plain to choose?
135     No foot-print leading to that horrid mews,
136 None out of it. Mad brewage set to work
137 Their brains, no doubt, like galley-slaves the Turk
138     Pits for his pastime, Christians against Jews.

139 And more than that--a furlong on--why, there!
140     What bad use was that engine for, that wheel,
141     Or brake, not wheel--that harrow fit to reel
142 Men's bodies out like silk? with all the air
143 Of Tophet's tool, on earth left unaware,
144     Or brought to sharpen its rusty teeth of steel.

145 Then came a bit of stubbed ground, once a wood,
146     Next a marsh, it would seem, and now mere earth
147     Desperate and done with; (so a fool finds mirth,
148 Makes a thing and then mars it, till his mood
149 Changes and off he goes!) within a rood--
150     Bog, clay and rubble, sand and stark black dearth.

151 Now blotches rankling, coloured gay and grim,
152     Now patches where some leanness of the soil's
153     Broke into moss or substances like boils;
154 Then came some palsied oak, a cleft in him
155 Like a distorted mouth that splits its rim
156     Gaping at death, and dies while it recoils.

157 And just as far as ever from the end!
158     Nought in the distance but the evening, nought
159     To point my footstep further! At the thought,
160 A great black bird, Apollyon's bosom-friend,
161 Sailed past, nor beat his wide wing dragon-penned
162     That brushed my cap--perchance the guide I sought.

163 For, looking up, aware I somehow grew,
164     'Spite of the dusk, the plain had given place
165     All round to mountains--with such name to grace
166 Mere ugly heights and heaps now stolen in view.
167 How thus they had surprised me,--solve it, you!
168     How to get from them was no clearer case.

169 Yet half I seemed to recognise some trick
170     Of mischief happened to me, God knows when--
171     In a bad dream perhaps. Here ended, then,
172 Progress this way. When, in the very nick
173 Of giving up, one time more, came a click
174     As when a trap shuts--you're inside the den!

175 Burningly it came on me all at once,
176     This was the place! those two hills on the right,
177     Crouched like two bulls locked horn in horn in fight;
178 While to the left, a tall scalped mountain . . . Dunce,
179 Dotard, a-dozing at the very nonce,
180     After a life spent training for the sight!

181 What in the midst lay but the Tower itself?
182     The round squat turret, blind as the fool's heart
183     Built of brown stone, without a counterpart
184 In the whole world. The tempest's mocking elf
185 Points to the shipman thus the unseen shelf
186     He strikes on, only when the timbers start.

187 Not see? because of night perhaps?--why, day
188     Came back again for that! before it left,
189     The dying sunset kindled through a cleft:
190 The hills, like giants at a hunting, lay
191 Chin upon hand, to see the game at bay,--
192     "Now stab and end the creature--to the heft!"

193 Not hear? when noise was everywhere! it tolled
194     Increasing like a bell. Names in my ears
195     Of all the lost adventurers my peers,--
196 How such a one was strong, and such was bold,
197 And such was fortunate, yet each of old
198     Lost, lost! one moment knelled the woe of years.

199 There they stood, ranged along the hillsides, met
200     To view the last of me, a living frame
201     For one more picture! in a sheet of flame
202 I saw them and I knew them all. And yet
203 Dauntless the slug-horn to my lips I set,
204     And blew. "Childe Roland to the Dark Tower came."

 


Примечания

Form:
abbaab
Composition Date:
Jan. 1852
1.
The title of the poem, and in Browning's own account the source of the theme, is spoken as a line of nonsense by the disguised Edgar in King Lear (at the end of III, iv).
"Childe" indicates a candidate for knighthood, the medieval sense being "a well-born youth."
48.
estray: a tame beast found wandering or without an owner.
66.
calcine: made friable by means of heat.
68.
bents: blades of stiff grass.
70.
as to: as if to.
72.
Pashing: smashing.
80.
colloped: ridged with lumps like collops of meat.
161.
dragon-penned: winged like a dragon.
179.
nonce: occasion.
182.
the fool's heart. "The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God" (Psalm 14:1).
203.
slug-horn: usually explained as a corruption of slogan, used here by Browning in the mistaken idea that it means a horn. Chatterton made this mistake in his Battle of Hastings, II, 10: "Some caught a slughorne and an onset wound." But there is the hyphenated word slug-horn, meaning a short and ill-formed horn of some animal of the ox kind. It is possible that Browning used the word in this sense. To have a misshapen horn hanging at the gate would be in keeping with the other features of the poem.

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случайная рецензия
Это кусок дерьма, а не рассказ, Кинг его написал наверное, не тогда, когда на остановке стоял, а когда в туалете сидел с запором. Маразм, отстой, бездарщина!!!!
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