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The Literary Groong - October 23, 2004

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	TO ARMENIA

	By Marietta Shaginian, 1903 
	Translated by Shushan Avagyan


	With such unfathomable comfort
	And a prayer on my lip do I recall
	The soulful chants of your churches,
	My far off homeland!

	With a pain as burning as the silhouette 
	Of my lover's face do I recall -
	Your meadows, rivers and valleys,
	And the opulent fragrance of thyme -

	Submissive to a mysterious law 
	My ears are still accustomed to long 
	For the sound of your solemnly lucid
	Language - oh, so glorious. 

	And at this hour of incessant yearning 
	While searching for a final haven,
	Your ill-starred child is coming 
	To rest with you, my precious -

	I know - the smart wild beast crawls
	Back to its burrow when wounded.
	Nurse my pains, oh, native land -
	That the northerner inflicted on me! 

--
Russian-Armenian pre- and post-revolutionary writer Marietta Shaginian
(1888-1982), otherwise known as Jim Dollar, was born in Moscow. She
was one of the "Fellow-Travelers" of the 1920's led by the Serapion
Brotherhood and wrote prolifically in various genres such as novels,
short stories, essays, poetry and travelogues from her excursions
across the newly established USSR. Soviet Marxist critics condemned
her experimental fiction as "internationalist" and "decadent." In her
later years she turned to travelogue writing, mostly focusing on her
regular journeys in Armenia.

This selection is from Orientalia [St. Petersburg, 1922].
To read more about Marietta Shaginian goto:
http://www.aiwa-net.org/AIWAwriters/shaginian.html

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