Today, we are digging the ground again
This loathsome Donetsk ground
This hard and petrified ground
We cling to her
We hide in her
While still alive.
We hide in the ground,
Sitting quietly in it
Like small children on our mother’s back.
We hear the beating of her heart
As she wearily breathes.
We are warm and peaceful:
Tomorrow we will already be dead
Perhaps a lot of us
Do not take us from the land
Do not tear us from our mother
Do not gather our remains from the battlefield,
Do not try to reconstruct us again
And – we implore you – no crosses,
Commemorative signs or commemorative plates.
We do not need this.
Since it is not for us – it’s for yourselves
You put up majestic monuments.
There’s no need to mint our names anywhere.
In this field
On this land
Lie Ukrainian soldiers
And this – is all.
Do not give us back to our parents
We do not want our parents to see us like this
Let our parents remember us as young children,
With slingshots and bruises on our knees,
With “F’s” in our report cards
With a handful of apples from the neighbor’s garden.
Let our parents hope that we will someday return
That we are somewhere.
Do not give us back to our wives
Let our beloved remember us as handsome
As those who were liked by many girls
But became theirs.
Let them remember our hot lips
Our hot breath
Our passionate embrace
Let them not touch our cold forehead
Our cold lips.
Do not return us to our children
Let the children remember our warm eyes
Our warm smiles
Our warm hands
Don’t let the kids touch, with trembling lips
Our cold hands.
Here, in these trenches,
What is now our temporary accommodations
And tomorrow will be our graves
No need for valedictories.
In the silence that comes after the battle,
It always looks out of place.
It’s like poking a fallen soldier
And asking him to stand up.
There’s no need for memorial services
We know regardless where our place is now
Just cover us with earth
And – go.
It would be good if there was a field on that spot
The rye would sway
And the lark in the sky
And – the sky
Plenty of sky.
Can you imagine what kind of bread the field would bring forth
Where the defenders lie?!
(In memory of us eat the bread from the field
Where we fell.)
It would be good if on that spot there were meadows
And lots and lots of flowers
And a bee over every flower.
So that at twilight lovers would come,
Would weave wreaths
And love each other until the morning.
And during the day young parents would come
With little children.
(Do not prevent the children from coming to us.)
But this will be tomorrow.
Today we still dig the ground
This dear Ukrainian ground,
This sweet gentle ground.
Writing with sapper’s shovels
Upon her body
The last verse of Ukrainian literature.
While still alive.
Source: Borys Humenyuk FB