The Joyous Science, Part 1
by Maxim Amelin, translated from the Russian by Derek Mong and Anne O. Fisher
The True Story of the Famous Bruce, Composed in Verse from the Accounts of Several Eyewitnesses
Maxim Amelin’s “The Joyous Science” chronicles the real and imagined exploits of Jacob Bruce (1669 1735), an astronomer, alchemist, and military strategist to Peter the Great. The poem is a mock epic, a biographical adventure, and a series of comedic set pieces that demonstrate how Amelinin the words of the 2013 committee for the Solzhenitsyn Prizehas “expand[ed] the limits and possibilities” of Russian verse.