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Carlyle, Thomas: Cui Bono (Cui Bono in Hungarian)

Portre of Carlyle, Thomas
Portre of Szabó Lőrinc

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Cui Bono (English)

What is Hope? A smiling rainbow

      Children follow through the wet;

’Tis not here, still yonder, yonder:

      Never urchin found it yet.


What is Life? A thawing iceboard

      On a sea with sunny shore;—

Gay we sail; it melts beneath us;

      We are sunk, and seen no more.


What is Man? A foolish baby,

      Vainly strives, and fights, and frets;

Demanding all, deserving nothing;—

      One small grave is what he gets.

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Cui Bono (Hungarian)

Mi a Remény? Szép szivárvány,

gyerekeket csalogat:

„Még! Még!" — s egyre tovaszállván

minden lurkót jól becsap.


Mi az Élet? Tűnő jégpad

napospartú tengeren;

vitorlánk fut, hajónk olvad

s elsüllyedünk, jeltelen.


Mi az Ember? Csacska bébi,

rugkapálva, nyögve sír;

tenger vágy és semmi érdem.

S amit kap: egy pici sir.

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