Vadim Shefner

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Vadim Sergeevich Shefner (Russian: Вадим Сергеевич Шефнер); (December 30, 1914 (January 12, 1915) - January 5, 2002) was a Soviet and Russian poet and writer who started publishing poetry in 1936. His first poetry collection was published in 1940. He turned to humorous and philosophical science fiction in the early 1960s, but continued publishing non-genre fiction and poetry. Here is an English translation of one of his most famous poems:

There are words - like wounds, words - like a court, With them, people do not surrender and do not take prisoners. You can kill with a word, you can save with a word. With a word, you can take armies to follow you. With a word, you can sell, and betray, and buy. A word can be transformed into a smashing lead. Vadim Shefner


  • "The Friar of Chikola" and "A Provincial's Wings", tr. Helen Saltz Jacobson, in New Soviet Science Fiction, New York, Macmillan, 1979, ISBN 0-02-578220-7
  • The Unman, New York, Collier Books, 1981, ISBN 0-02-610060-6, 233p. Includes:
    • The Unman (Chelovek s piatiyu ne), trs. Alice Stone Nakhimovsky and Alexander Nakhimovsky
    • Kovrigin’s chronicles (Devushka u obryva), tr. Antonina W. Bouis
  • "A Modest Genius: A Fairy Tale for Grown-Ups" ("Skromny geniy"), in:

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