• Српски
Narodne umotvorine

Marko Kraljevich and the Eagle

Marko lies beside the high road of the Tsar,
His spear behind his head, planted in the earth:
He draws around him there his dark green dolman,
Covers up his face with silver-threaded cloth.
Sharats stands beside him, tethered to the spear-shaft-
And on the top of it there perches a great eagle.
He spreads his wings, making shade for Marko,
And gives him cool water from his beak,
Cool water for the wounded hero.
But suddenly a Vila cries out from the woods:
"In God's name great gray eagle there,
Whatever kind of goodness did this Marko do for you,
What act of kindness or of charity
That you should stretch your wings and shade him in this way
And bring him water in your beak,
Cool water for the wounded hero?"
And now the bird, the eagle, speaks to him and says:
"Silence, Vila! Shut your stupid mouth!
What sort of goodness has this Marko failed to do,
What act of charity has he not done for me?
It could be even you remember this-
The army dropping off like flies at Kosovo,
The two Tsars dying on the field-
Murad dying, great Tsar Lazar dying-
And all the blood rising to the stirrups,
Rising even to the silken belts of heroes,
Men and horses floating in it, swimming,
Horse by horse & hero next to hero-
And then the coming of the hungry birds.
As we ate our fill of human flesh
And drank our fill of human blood
My wings grew wet and sticky in the sun
Which burst out flaming in the crystal sky
And suddenly I could not fly at all
So stiff with blood & scorched had grown my wings.
When all the other birds had flown away
I alone remained on level Kosovo
Trampled under foot by horses and by heroes.
Then God sent Marko to me on that plain
Who plucked me from the flowing blood of heroes
And set me down behind him on the back of Sharats.
He took me straight into the nearest woods
And put me on the green branch of a pine.
Then a gentle rain began to rain.
It fell down from the sky and washed my wings,
Washed away the blood of noble heroes,
And I could fly above beyond the forest
And join all the eagles, join my swift companions.