top of page
  • Writer's pictureCorbin Allardice

Commonplace Book 7: Et Cetera (Final Entry)


Forgive, and bear it all happy. (source unknown)

Fartsey, un trog alts iber dermutik.


Forbear to judge, for we are sinners all. (Henry V, Part 2)

Nit mishpet--mir zenen ale zindike


Blessed is he who has found his work. (Past and Present)

Gebentsht iz der mentsh vos hot gefunen zayn arbet.


Thought? Yes. But action? That I do not understand. (source unknown)

Trakhtn? Yo. Nor ton? Dos farshtey ikh nisht.

What does it mean to live?

To be consumed by dark passions in the struggle

against fate’s judgement,

To sublimate them and to thereby create?

It must be to hold a disinterested court

To judge your own soul’s fate.

что значит жить?

В борьбе с судьбою страстями темными сгорать,


то значит над собою нелицемерный суд держать

(Varshe includes this final text in Russian and without Yiddish translation. It seems, although I am not certain, that this poem is a Russian adaptation of Ibsen’s German poem Ein Vers, included below with my English translation. My thanks to my friend and Russian teacher Andrew Kuznetsov for helping me translate from the Russian.)

Ein Vers

Leben heißt – dunkler Gewalten

Spuk bekämpfen in sich.

Dichten – Gerichtstag halten

Über sein eignes Ich.

A Verse

To live means--dark spectres

Calling from within your soul, and beckoning.

To write--to inspect your

Own soul in a Day of Reckoning.

By Ovid, Shakespeare, Carlyle, & Ibsen

Yiddish Translation and Compilation by Moyshe Varshe

Research, Re-compilation and Re-translation by Corbin Allardice

Recent Posts

See All

Moyshe Varshe - Book Finished!!

Wow, with that last entry, the entirety of Metempsychoses: The Diary and Writings of Moyshe Varshe (vegn fun a neshome: togbukh, ferzn, bletlekh) has been translated and posted here! It's sort of hard


bottom of page