A poet who lived in the between the wars period, a communist but also a very talented author. Here’s again my translation of one of the Rudolf Nilsen’s poems from “På stengrunn (1925).
The link to my previous post about Nilsen (if you want to read more about him and his poems).
De unge bjerkene i svarte byen
de står og bruser med sitt lyse løv,
som om de åndet store skogers vårluft
og ikke skorstensrok og gatestøv.
De løfter tappert sine tynne grener
og lar dem svaie under vårens sus
og varme seg i solens gode stråler,
som flommer inn imellom gatens hus!
Men de blir aldri som de store trærne,
som står og suser ute i det fri.
Slik er det når man vokser opp på stengrunn
og bare har en drøm om skog og li.
*** translation ***
On stony ground
The young birches in the black city
with their bright leaves, they stand and hiss,
as if they were breathing large forests spring air
and not chimney’s smoke and dust of the street.
They bravely lift thin branches of theirs
and let them sway under the spring’s puff
and warm up in the sun’s fine rays,
which in between the street houses floods!
But they never become like the big trees,
standing and soughing out in the free.
That’s how it is when one grows upon stony ground
and only have a dream of forest and brae.