A Duel

in Bulgarian

We have come to close grips
you and I have locked hands,
from my heart the blood drips
and you weaken. What then?
One will be overthrown,
one will be beaten -
and you are the one.

So you doubt it? You don't feel afraid?
But I've planned every move to be made.
I'm putting my heart in the fight,
and you'll be beaten -
degenerate, venomous life.

It's not now that we're starting, you know.
Our duel began long ago.
Our duel with passion we've waged
for many long days.
For days we've locked
our arms and wrists.
I'll never forget
your brutal fist.

In the mine gas exploded.
The layers of coal
		buried
fifteen men below.
Buried
fifteen
	human
		corpses.
One of them
	    was
		I.

By the door of a slum
lies
	a smoking
			gun,
while the corpse slowly freezes.
No shouting,
	no din,
one bullet
then - dirt for the bin.
It's easy as that...
No fighting.
No passion for life,
and no fuss.
Don't you know
who it was?
It
 was
   I.

On the rainwashed pavement
					the victim lies
shot dead from an ambush.
The sky has been mined
and will crash
		on the square.
But the man
		lying there
in the pool of blood
is my brother -
a fire
	of hatred and love
in his glassy stare.
The villain,
	the loathsome
			gunman
instantly
	vanished from sight.
You remember the rogue?
It
 was
    I.

But do you remember a child that died
				in Paris on the barricades,
a child
	that died in battle
with gory
	retrogression?
The warm blood in his veins
grew slowly
		cold as steel,
and then his lips were parted
on a fleeting smile.
But though his lips turned blue,
his eyes
	still burned with zeal
as it his eyes were singing:
"Liberté chérie!"

The child
	lay there
		shot -
in the chill grip of death.
Do you know
who it was?
It was I!
Do you remember
		an engine
with gay
	optimism
piercing
	the fog
where even the birds
			do not dare
to descend
	through the mist-laden air?
An engine with wings
that cleave
		the cold curtain
and change the earth's orbit,
with gasoline vapour's explosion
clearing the way toward progress.

The engine which sings high above
is the work of my hands,
and the song of my engine
is the blood of my heart.

The man whose shrewd eyes
			were glued
		to the wavering compass,
the man
	who had dared to defy
the cold northern frost
			and the mist -
do you know
	who it was?
It was
	I.

I am here
	and there.
		I am everywhere. -

A worker in Texas,
Algerian docker,
		or poet...
Everywhere am I!

Do you think, life,
			you'll win?
You evil and scowling,
dirty thing!

I
blaze,
	you blaze,
and we're both of us
			bathed in sweat.
But you're draining your strength.
Growing weaker,
		declining.
That's why you're ferociously
			  driving your sting into me,
in the terror of imminent death
				maybe...

For then
	in your place,
			with toil and sweat
we'll build up
		together in company
a life
	we desire,
		a life we need,
and how fine
	   that life will be!

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