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...
 
.
 JOHN WOODSWORTH
(Dzhon Vudsvort)
.
Sample Russian poems:
iz dukhoborcheskogo zhurnala "Iskra"
[from the Douhkhobor magazine "Iskra"]
(with English translation)

Svet skvoz' dozhd' [Sunlight through the rain]
Preobrazhenie [Transfiguration]
Tret'emu tysjacheletiju [To the Third Millennium]
.
(page updated 21 November 2003)
.

..

Sample ISKRA issues (Nos 1905, 1921)
(click on either image to go to the Iskra website)

The magazine Iskra has been published as the official journal of the Doukhobor organisation (the Union of Spiritual Communities of Christ) for almost sixty years.  Founded in the 1940s by John J. Verigin Sr (now Honorary Chairman of the USCC), it takes its name from the Russian word for 'spark', in recognition of the inner spiritual spark -- a sign, the Doukhobors believe, of God's presence in every human being.

Ten of JW's Russian-language poems have been published in Iskra to date (click here for a complete listing).  While JW is not himself a Doukhobor, he is very glad of the opportunity to have become acquainted with them through his academic research activities, and has great respect for the moral and spiritual principles underlying their outlook on life and the way of life which flows from their teachings.

You are welcome to visit the Iskra website (click here).



 
 
 
 
 

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NEW:
Click here to read a report by JW published in ISKRA November 2003 on three Tolstoy conferences in Russia, along with photos and poems
.

 
 
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PLEASE NOTE:
The Russian poems on this page are shown in image representation only.
Unfortunately, they do not have the properties of electronic text.
.

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Svet skvoz' dozhd' [Sunlight through the rain]
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published in Iskra No 1891 (26 April 2000)
in both Russian & English translation

Both the original and translation were also reproduced in the volume
Sasquatch - Twenty poems for twenty years: A tribute to Juan O'Neill
(Ottawa: Sasquatch Writers Performance Series, 2001)


English translation follows
.
.

John Woodsworth

Sunlight through the rain
(Svet skvoz' dozhd')

 
I went out for a walk last week...
The rain came too, and soaked my clothes...
Strong gusts of wetness lashed my cheek,
The water trickled to my toes.

When all at once the sun's bright ray
Pierced like a laser cloud and gloomÖ
It shone through the rain upon my way
And cheered my heavy step of doom.

What a joy is sunshine seen through rain!
As laughter may through tears be born...
And mightiest of all in Earth's domain --
A roseís smile seen through the thorn.
 

Ottawa
29 October 1999

English translation © John Woodsworth
9 November 1999
.


.

*          *          *

Preobrazhenie [Transfiguration]
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published in Iskra No 1901 (20 December 2000) in Russian only;
republished, with English translation, in Iskra No 1902 (17 January 1901)
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English translation follows
.

.

John Woodsworth

Transfiguration
(Preobrazhenie)


Now Winter's approaching, and over the fields --
Lies the first crystal frost of the season,
The flowers are fading, as old Autumn yields
Its control to the winter's first freezing!

The earth is at rest, and the forest's asleep,
After all its hard work of the Summer...
Loud thunder's no more, and a silence so deep
Spreads the world with a blanket of slumber.

But Nature's a-stirring, no sleep does she take,
In her state of perpetual motion...
For all living creatures new Spring will awake,
And bring forth a new birth with devotion.

And when our frail bodies succumb to their rest,
And earth's senses have long been forsaken,
Our soul will arise and will find itself blessed
As within us new thoughts are awakened.

Not death is approaching, but life without end
Shows its clear, unmistakable traces,
God bears us anew -- through His Christ we ascend
To His tender, eternal embraces. 
 
 

Ottawa
24 November 2000
 
 

English translation © John Woodsworth
8 December 2000
.
 

*          *          *
Tret'emu tysjacheletiju 
[To the Third Millenium]
published in Iskra No 1903 (7 February 2001)
in both Russian and English translation
.

English translation follows
.
.

John Woodsworth

To the Third Millenium
(Tret'emu tysjacheletiju)

 
 
Farewell, departing year,
A century -- a 'centennium' --
Indeed, a whole millennium
In the history of mankind!
From all around our sphere
New songs of praise are sounding,
With anthems loud resounding
For days we still must find.

Farewell, departing world
Of obsolete vainglory,
The same old rotten story
Of evil without cure!
Equality, now unfurled
In place of wars and malice,
Gives soul and body solace,
A holiness so pure.

All hail the brand new age,
All hail the New Millennium!
We wish long life and then some,
And peace o'er all the earth!
All hail the man God made,
In His own image treasured,
The man time cannot measure --
Eternity's his worth.
 
 

Ottawa
1 January 2001
 

English translation © John Woodsworth
4 January 2001
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Other references to ISKRA

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Two poems on the events of 11 September 2001, also published in Iskra, may be found elsewhere on this site (click here).

Another poem by JW, entitled Tri slova [Three words], reprinted in Iskra, may be read on-line (in Russian only) on the Moskva neofitsial'naja site at:
http://www.in.msk.ru/rus/biblioteka/stihi/woodsw/006.shtml

NEW: Two poems by JW on the Yasnaya Polyana Dom otdykha appear on pages related to a report on the Tolstoy conferences in Russia in August 2003 (click here), which also appeared in Iskra.  Click here to read the report.
Click here for a poem about Turgenev's estate Spasskoe-Lutovinovo.

NEW: JW's tribute article to eminent Tolstoy scholar Lidija Dmitrievna Gromova-Opul'skaja appeared in Iskra (in  Russian and English translation) in the issue of 25 February 2004.

Special note:  The Russian fonts used to display the poems above were designed by JW in the late 1980s, using the font editor "FonTastic" on an old 512K Macintosh computer.

.

 
 
 

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...
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"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you... 
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."

-- John 14:27
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E-mail : <jw[at ]kanadacha.ca>
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