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Robert Elsie

Albanian Literature | Classical

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Pashko VASA

Pashko VASA

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O moj Shqypni


Rec. Pjeter Gjoka

O moj Shqypni, e mjera Shqypni,
Kush të ka qit me krye n’hi?
Ti ke pas ken nji zoj e rand,
Burrat e dheut të thirshin nan.
Ke pas shum t’mira e shum begati,
Me varza t’bukra e me djelm t’ri.
Gja e vend shum, ara e bashtina,
Me arm të bardha e me pushk ltina,
Me burra trima e me gra t’dlira
Ti ndër gjith shoqet ke ken ma e mira.

Kur kriste pushka si me shkrep moti,
Zogu i Shqyptarit gjithmonë i zoti
Ka ken për luft e n’luft ka dekun
E dhunë mprapa kurr s’i ka metun.
Kur ka lidh besën burri i Shqypnis,
I ka shti dridhën gjith Rumelis;
Ndër lufta t’rrebta gjithkund ka ra,
Me faqe t’bardh gjithmon asht da.

Por sot, Shqypni, po m’thuej, si je?
Por sikur lisi rrxuem për dhe!
Shkon, bota sipri, me kamb e shklet,
E nji fjal t’ambël kurrkush s’ia flet.
Si mal me bor, si fush me lule,
Ke pas ken veshun, sot je me crule
E nuk t’ka metun as emn as bes,
Vet e ke prishun për faqe t’zez.

Shqyptar, me vllazën jeni t’u vra,
Ndër nji qind çeta jeni shpërnda;
Sa thon kam fe, sa thon kam din,
Njeni: jam turk, tjetri: latin
Do thom: jam grek, shkje disa tjerë,
Por jeni vllazën, t’gjith, more t’mjer!
Priftnit e hoxhët ju kan hutue,
Për me ju da e me ju vorfnue.
Vjen njeri i huej e ju rri n’votër,
Me ju turpnue me grue e me motër;
E për sa pare qi do t’fitoni,
Besën e t’parëve t’gjith e harroni,
Baheni robt e njerit t’huej,
Qi nuk ka gjuhën as gjakun tuej.
Kjani ju shpata e ju dyfeqe,
Shqyptari u zu si zok ndër leqe!
Kjani ju trima, bashk me ne,
Se ra Shqypnija me faqe n’dhe,
E s’i ka metun as buk as mish,
As zjarm në votër as drit as pish,
As gjak në faqe as nder ndër shok,
Por asht rrëxue e bamun trok!

Mblidhnju ju varza, mblidhnju ju gra,
Me ata sy t’bukur q’dini me kja,
Eni t’vajtojm Shqypnin e mjer
Qi met e shkret pa emn, pa nder,
Ka met e vej si grue pa burr,
Ka met si nan qi s’pat djal kurr!

Kujt i ban zemra me e lan me dek
Kët far trimneshet qi sot asht mek?
Kët nan të dashtun e do ta lam,
Qi njeri i huej ta shklas me kamb?

Jo! jo! Kët marre askush s’e do,
Kët faqe t’zez gjithkush e dro!
Para se t’hupet kështu Shqypnija,
Me pushk në dor le t’des trimnija.

Çonju, shqyptar, prej gjumit çonju,
Të gjith si vllazën n’nji bes shtrëngonju,
E mos shikjoni kish e xhamija,
Feja e shqyptarit asht shqyptarija!

Qysh prej Tivarit deri n’Prevezë,
Gjithkund lshon dielli vap edhe rrezë,
Asht tok e jona, t’part na e kan lan,
Kush mos na e preki, se desim t’tan!
Desim si burrat qi diqne motit
E mos turpnohna përpara Zotit!

 

Pashko VASA

 

Webdesign J. Groß

Pashko VASA

 

Audio of this poem in Albanian

Oh Albania, Poor Albania

Oh Albania, poor Albania,
Who has shoved your head in ashes?
Once you were a fine, great lady,
All the world's men called you mother.
Once you had such wealth and goodness,
With fair maidens, strapping young lads,
Herds and land, rich fields and produce,
Flashing guns, Italian weapons,
Heroic fellows and pure women,
You reigned as their best companion.

At rifle's blast, at flash of lightning
The Albanian mastered battle,
Thus he fought and thus he perished,
Leaving ne'er misdeeds behind him.
Whene'er an Albanian swore an oath did
All the Balkans tremble at him,
When he charged in savage battle,
Always he returned a victor.

How fare you today, Albania?
Like an oak tree groundward falling!
Trampled now, the world walks o'er you,
No one has a kind word for you.
Like snow-capped peaks, like fields a-blooming
You were clothed, you're now in tatters,
You've no name or reputation,
In your plight you have destroyed them.

Albanians, you are killing kinfolk,
You're split in a hundred factions,
Some believe in God or Allah,
Say 'I'm Turk,' or 'I am Latin,'
Say 'I'm Greek,' or 'I am Slavic,'
But you're brothers, hapless people!
You've been duped by priests and hodjas
To divide you, keep you wretched,
When the stranger shares your hearth side,
Puts to shame your wife and sister,
You still serve him, gaining little,
You forget your forebears' pledges
You are serfs to foreign landlords,
Who have not your blood or language!
Weep, lament, oh swords and rifles,
The Albanian bird's been snared, imprisoned!
Weep with us, oh dauntless heroes,
For Albania's toppled, face-smeared,
Neither bread nor meat remaining,
Fire in hearth, nor light, nor pine torch,
Drained of blood and of friends' honour,
She's defiled and now has fallen!

Gather 'round now, maids and women,
You with fair eyes know of weeping,
Come and mourn our poor Albania,
She has lost her honour, virtue,
She's a widow with no husband,
She's a mother with no offspring!

Who has the heart to let her perish,
Once a heroine, now so weakened!
Well-loved mother, dare we leave her
To fall under foreign boot heels?

No one wishes such shame on her,
Each of us dreads such misfortune!
Before Albania's thus forsaken
Let our men die, bearing rifles.

Wake, Albanian, from your slumber,
Let us, brothers, swear in common
And not look to church or mosque,
The Albanian's faith is Albanianism!

From Bar down to far Preveza
Shall the sun spread forth its warm rays,
Our forefathers left us this land,
Let none touch it, for we'll all die!
Let us fall as did our forebears
And not shame ourselves before God!

[O moj Shqypni, ca. 1878, translated from the Albanian by Robert Elsie.]