- Armenian Literature, History, Religion in in Russian

Alice Stone Blackwell


Contents | Table of contents [as in the book] | Preface | Introduction

Bedros Tourian | Michael Nalbandian | Abp. Khorène Nar Bey De Lusignan
Mugurditch Beshiktashlian | Raphael Patkanian | Leo Alishan | St. Gregory of Narek
Nerses the Graceful | Saïat Nova | Djivan | Raffi | Koutcharian | Terzyan | Totochian
Damadian | Atom Yarjanian (Siamanto) | Daniel Varoujan | Archag Tchobanian
Hovhannes Toumanian | Hovhannes Hovhannessian | Zabel Assatour (Madame Sybil)
Mugurditch Chrimian Hairig | M. Portoukalian | Mihran Damadian
Arshag D. Mahdesian | Nahabed Koutchak | Shoushanig Khourghinian
Avedik Issahakian | Avedis Aharonian | Karekin Servantzdiantz | Bedros Adamian
Tigrane Yergate | Khorène M. Antreassian | Djivan | Miscellaneous songs and poems

APPENDIX: The Armenian Women | The Armenian Church
Bibliography | Comments on the first edition of "Armenian Poems"

HOVHANNES HOVHANNESSIAN, teacher and writer, was born in 1864 at Vagharshabad, near Etchmiadzin. He is a graduate of the University of Moscow.

1. New Spring
2. The Poet
3. Song


WHERE art thou coming, Springtime sweet?
Thou com’st in vain, O Spring!
I No one is left to wait for thee,
No one thy praise to sing.

Deep darkness has enwrapped the world;
To mount and valley cling
Red stains of blood; this year brought woe.
Where art thou coming, Spring?

The nightingale may sing to thee;
Who else, where all are slain,
Is left to smile? What heart can stir?
O Spring, thou com’st in vain!

The nightingale has come, but found
No rose with silken leaf.
Here is the flower-bed, but no flower.
Who else is free from grief?

Although thou hast brought back the birds,
How shall they find their nests?
No spot in all our fatherland
Unspoiled, unruined rests.

The minstrel’s mouth is closed to-day;
No flutes or viols ring;
His heart is burning without fire.
Where art thou coming, Spring?

No one is left to praise thee now
On mountain or on plain;
No one is left to wait for thee;
O Spring, thou com’st in vain!



LET your song boil with fire of ardent wrath,
And make the soul with unfeigned sorrow ache;
Echo of noble wishes let it be.
And sacred patriotism let it wake,

Let every note call on us to advance;
Breathe hope to those oppressed by conflicts dread;
With immortality the fallen wreathe,
And shame the man who like a dastard fled.

Yea, let us wrestle for the light, the truth,
Which with untruth and darkness wage their fray!
Then, bowing reverently before your face,
“You are a poet!” we with joy will say.

Let your song ring as rings the gurgling brook
That glides with silvery eddies mile on mile;
Let hopes and wishes bubble there like springs,
With sounds of power, and with a vivid smile.

Make us, while we to tender voices list,
Forget ourselves and soar to worlds above,
Where bitter tears of hardship are not shed,
Where rest is found, and beauty glows with love.

Make us be glad and cast off grief and care,
And live in dreams of childhood far away;
Then we shall bless the work that you have wrought;
“You are a poet!” we with joy shall say.



HOW often in my life to find
Tranquillity I yearned!
Ever with visions infinite
My heart within me burned.

The world will not afford this peace
For which I ask in vain;
My broken, wasted heart would not
With empty hope remain.

I seek not the impossible—
One heart to which to cling,
One feeling heart, which to its mate
Would bring love’s glowing spring.



Source: Blackwell, Alice Stone. Armenian Poems, Rendered into English Verse. Boston, MA: Atlantic Printing Company, 1917
Provided by: Aram Arkun, Krikor and Clara Zohrab Information Center
Scanned by: Karen Vrtanesyan
OCR: Karen Vrtanesyan

See also:

Biography of Hovhannes Hovhannesian
Poems of Hovhannes Hovhannesian in Armenian
Russian poetry translated by Alice Stone Blackwell

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