Poezii
Romanian Voice
George Cosbuc
We want land

I'm hungry, naked, homeless, through,
Because of loads I had to carry;
You've spat on me, and hit me - marry,
A dog I've been to you !
Vile lord, whom winds brought to this land,
If hell itself gives you free hand
To tread us down and make us bleed,
We will endure both load and need,
The plough and harness yet take heed,
We ask for land!

Whene'er you see a crust of bread,
Though brown and stale, we see's no more;
You drag our sons to ruthless war,
Our daughters to your bed.
You curse what we hold dear and grand,
Faith and compassion you have banned;
Our children starve with want and chill
And we go mad with pity, still
We'd bear the grinding of your mill,
Had we but land !

You've turned into a field of corn
The village graveyard, and we plough
And dig out bones and weep and mourn
Oh, had we ne'er been born !
For those are bones of our own bone,
But you don't care, o hearts of stone !
Out of our house you drive us now,
And dig our dead out of their grave;
A silent corner of their own
The land we crave !

Besides, we want to know for sure
That we, too, shall together lie,
That on the day on which we die,
You will not mock the poor.
The orphans, those to us so dear,
Who o'er a grave would shed a tear,
Won't know the ditches where we rot;
We've been denied a burial plot
Though we are Christians, are we not ?
We ask for land, d'you hear ?

Nor have we time to say a prayer,
For time is in your power too;
A soul is all we have, and you
Much you do care !
You've sworn to rob us of the right
To tell our grievances outright;
You give us torture when we shout,
Unheard-of torture, chain and clout
And lead when, dead tired, we cry out:
For land we'll fight !

What is it you've here buried ? say !
Corn ? maize ? We have forbears and mothers,
We, fathers, sisters dear and brothers !
Unwished - for guests, away !
Our land is holy, rich and brave,
It is our cradle and our grave;
We have defended it with sweat
And blood, and bitter tears have wet
Each palm of it - so, don't forget:
'Tis land we crave !

We can no more endure the goads,
No more the hunger, the disasters
That follow on the heels of masters
Picked from the roads !
God grant that we shall not demand
Your hated blood instead of land !
When hunger will untie our ties
And poverty will make us rise.
E'en in your grave we will chastise
You and your band !


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