Without you, my friends, what is my photo worth – Rossiyskaya Gazeta

Strelchenko Vadim Konstantinovich (11/06/1912 – 01/06/1942), private.

Vadim was born in Kherson (Korsun). He graduated from school in Odessa.

He worked as a mechanic at a factory.

In 1929, Vadim published his first poem in the Odessa magazine “Shkval”.

In 1931, Eduard Bagritsky, having read Strelchenko’s poems, highly appreciated them and advised them to publish them in the Krasnaya Nov ‘magazine.

In 1936, Vadim Strelchenko entered the Literary Institute. A.M. Gorky, but abandoned him.

Published two collections of poetry: “Poems of a Comrade” (1937) and “My Photo” (1941).

Vadim was removed from the military register due to poor eyesight, but on September 5, 1941, he volunteered for the people’s militia of the Krasnopresnensky district of Moscow. He disappeared without a trace in the battles near Vyazma in 1942.

Only in 1946, the poet’s mother, Klavdia Nikolaevna, received a notification that Vadim was recognized as missing, which gave him the right to receive a pension (typewritten copy, RGALI. F. 631. Op. 16. Ed. Xr. 669. Sheet 3).

The name of Vadim Strelchenko is entered on the memorial plaque at the Literary Institute named after A.M. Gorky.


The first posthumous book of poems by Vadim Strelchenko was published in Goslitizdat in 1958.

In 1961 Vadim Strelchenko’s collection Poems was published in the Library of Soviet Poetry. It includes 46 poems and a poem dedicated to his son “Valentine”.

Vadim Strelchenko’s poems have been included in the anthology of frontline poetry since 1965, with the publication of twelve of his poems in the book “Soviet Poets Who Fell in the Great Patriotic War.”

Photo: RGALI

Poem by Vadim Strelchenko

My picture

The man is filmed in the photo.

Plants stick out around him,

Euphorbia has grown around him –

And nothing else … Deserted land!

And nothing else, as if he

And indeed he was born under the cabbage …

I am surprised to look at my portrait:

The features are similar, but I do not!

With me in my photo

Thousands of people should be filmed

The people who made up my family.

Let my mother rock my cradle!

Let the milkmaids stand with milk

I drank a year ago

It was white, clean and bright,

It once saved my life.

The sailor is huge, with gauze on his temple,

Swinging on a truck

In a coffin open on a moonlit night …

Came down to earth to guard my sleep,

Acacia and school bench

And he entered my family forever.

And somewhere behind my face

There is a place for the scoundrel,

Whose dust is in the ground – and he is hostile to me:

Appear, Denikin, as a shadow on the wall!

Merchant Marya will stand in the corner –

Coupons, vouchers, crowns in your wallet, –

The merchant’s hand reaches for the fruit …

I am the enemy of misers, liars and traders!

A soldier must also be with me,

I met seventeen years ago

(Such was the radiance on the wave,

That I was ashamed to spit into the water.)

French soldier in a blue jacket,

Who shared the melon with me

Sensing the boy’s hungry eyes …

The sea was rustling … Where are you, soldier?

Forgetting your eyes, smile, mouth,

I fell in love with the people of France.

This is how I write. And before me is a portrait

He already has no end and no edge:

They appeared laughing and saying

Sailors, laundresses, seamstresses, locksmiths.

Without you, I am not happy with the portrait,

As if there were no hands or eyes.

Teachers who loved me!

Passers-by who gave fire!

You are with me. Without you, my friends.

What is my photo worth!


Source: Российская Газета by rg.ru.

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