Letter 1755

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Date 17/29 May 1881
Addressed to Sergey Flerov
Where written Kamenka
Language Russian
Autograph Location Moscow: Russian State Archive of Literature and Art
Publication Чайковский на Московской сцене (1940), p. 461
П. И. Чайковский. Полное собрание сочинений, том X (1966), p. 111

Text and Translation

Russian text
English translation
By Luis Sundkvist
17 мая

Многоуважаемый Сергей Васильевич!

Один знакомый мне юноша, Вадим Переслени, сочиняет стихи и страстно желает видеть их напечатанными. Согласно его убедительной просьбе, стихи его я позволяю себе послать Вам с тем, чтобы Вы соблаговолили прочесть их, решить, годятся ли они для печати, и если да, то содействовать к напечатанию хотя некоторых из них в «Русск[ом] Вестн[ике]». Мне кажется, что стихотворения эти нисколько не превышают пределов посредственности, и потому я нимало не буду удивлён, если Вы забракуете их. Я предупредил молодого автора, чтобы он не смущался, если желание его не будет исполнено. В случае же, если Вы найдёте возможным удовлетворить просьбу моего protégé, то его осчастливите, а я снова буду иметь случай быть Вам благодарным. Простите, Сергей Васильевич, мою назойливость.

Искренно Вам преданный и уважающий Вас,

П. Чайковский

17 May

Most respected Sergey Vasilyevich!

A certain young man of my acquaintance, Vadim Peresleni, writes verses and ardently wishes to see them published. In accordance with his pressing request I have taken the liberty of sending these verses to you in the hope that you might deign to read through them and decide whether they are fit to be printed, and if they are, to facilitate the publication of at least a few of them in the Russian Herald. It seems to me that these poems in no way surpass the boundaries of mediocrity, and I would therefore not be surprised in the least if you reject them [1]. I have warned the young author not to be upset if his wish is not fulfilled. In the eventuality, however, that you should find it possible to satisfy the request of my protégé, you would make him happy, while I would once again have occasion to be grateful to you [2]. Forgive me, Sergey Vasilyevich, for my importunity.

With sincere devotion and respect for you,

P. Tchaikovsky

Notes and References

  1. In his reply to Tchaikovsky, dated 28 May/9 June 1881, Sergey Flerov wrote that if his memory did not fail him, he had been Vadim Peresleni's Latin teacher when the latter was a gymnasium pupil in Moscow, and that he remembered Vadim (and his brother Nikolay) to have been a fine boy. As a critic, however, he found young Peresleni's verses to be "immature", adding ironically that they were no more than "the obligatory eulogy by every young man to the famous diva Mademoiselle x or z, whose purpose is fully attained once the latter has read the verses, stuck them under her corset, and shared them with a few girl-friends". Flerov also wrote that over the last two weeks he had been playing through, to his great satisfaction, Tchaikovsky's recently published Six Duets, Op. 46, and Seven Romances, Op. 47. At the end of his letter Flerov mentioned that a few days earlier he had met the composer's brother Anatoly, and Sergey Taneyev: he had been delighted to hear from them that Tchaikovsky was writing an All-Night Vigil. Flerov's letter has been published in Чайковский на московской сцене (1940), p. 462–463.
  2. Tchaikovsky had written to Flerov once before, from Paris on 16/28 March 1881 (letter 1713]]), enclosing his article The Last Days of N. G. Rubinstein's Life and asking Flerov to publish it in the Moscow Register. Flerov had duly complied with this request.