Rachel Bluwstein: The Messenger (From Hebrew)

The Messenger
By Rachel Bluwstein
Translated by A.Z. Foreman
Click to hear me recite the original Hebrew

The messenger came in the night
And sat upon my bed:
A fleshless, bone-protruding body
And socket-sunken head.

And then I knew the ancient bridge
Had finally given way,
That time had drooped its hands between
Tomorrow and today.
 

He menaced with a scrawny fist,
He laughed with cruel delight
"Oh yes indeed, this poem is

The last you'll ever write."

The Original:

המבשר
רחל המשוררת

בַּלַּיְלָה בָּא הַמְבַשֵּׂר
עַל מִשְׁכָּבִי יָשַׁב,
בָּלְטוּ עַצְמוֹת גֵּווֹ אֵין-שְׁאֵר,
עָמְקוּ חוֹרֵי עֵינָיו.

אֲזַי יָדַעְתִּי כִּי נִשְׁבַּר
הַגֶּשֶׁר הַיָּשָׁן,
שֶׁבֵּין אֶתְמוֹל לְבֵין מָחָר
תָּלוּ יְדֵי הַזְּמָן.

אִיֵּם עָלַי אֶגְרוֹף רָזֶה,
נִשְׁמַע לִי צְחוֹק זָדוֹן:
אָכֵן יְהֵא הַשִּׁיר הַזֶה
שִׁירֵךְ הָאַחֲרוֹן!

Romanization:

Hamevaser
Raḥel Hamešoréret

Baláyla ba hamevaser
ˁal miškavi yašav
Baltu ˁatsmot gevo eyn-šer
ˁamku ḥorey ˁeynav.

Azay yadáˁti ki nišbar
Hagéšer hayašan,
Šebeyn etmol leveyn maḥar
Talu yadey hazman

Iyem ˁalay egrof raze
Nišmaˁ li tsḥok zadon:
Axen yehe hašir haze
Širex ha'aḥaron.  

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