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Land of quick cold,
of forests and heavy-backed mountains, where
rumpled waterfalls
roar like prophets of doom —

Sacred land, sacred forever,
do you still remember
when your grim-faced Varangians
went out across Europe to Greece?

Is it right ? Can it be right
that Oleg’s bronze shield,
having seen so much bloodshed, could be
abandoned at Constantinople’s golden gates?

Can your Russian sister, helped
by your hands to glory, to power, to triumph,
wilt her head, again,
in a torment of madness?

Can your fresh northern wind
have howled sweetly but emptily
in our ears ? Did your Rurik waste his years
in Russia, build his empire for nothing?

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