Second Elegy: The Getica

Nichita Stanescu

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for Vasile Parvan

A god was put in every tree stump.

If a stone split, a god
was quickly brought and put there.

It was enough that a bridge fell down,
a god was quickly put in its place,

or that a hole appeared in the highway,
a god was inserted there.

Oh, do not cut your hand or leg
by mistake - or by design.

They will promptly place a god in the wound,
as in every place, as everywhere,
they will place a god there
for us to worship, because he protects
whatever disunites itself.

Take care, warrior, do not lose
an eye,
for they will bring a god
and set him in your socket,
and he will stay there, petrified, and we
will move our souls to praise him...
And you yourself will stir your soul
in praising him, as you would strangers.

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