How Much Time

Standard

How Much Time
Yehuda Amichai

I remember the rain,
But I have forgotten things
The rain covered years ago.

My gaze is lifted
Like an airplane between control tower
And open spaces of abandonment and oblivion.

A foreign country covers
my face with its waters
I am a sad general of streaming water.

Cambridge. Closed door of a friend’s house:
How much time must pass
For such spiderwebs to take shape,
How much time?

Photo by Eutah Mizushima on Unsplash

hand in hand

Standard

Hand in Hand
Carlos Drummond de Andrade

I won’t be the poet of a decrepit world.
Nor will I sing the world of the future.
I’m bound to life, and I look at my companions.
They’re taciturn but nourish great hopes.
In their midst, I consider capacious reality.
The present is so large, let’s not stray far.
Let’s stay together and go hand in hand.

I won’t be the singer of some woman, some tale,
I won’t evoke the sights at dusk, the scene outside the window,
I won’t distribute drugs or suicide letters,
I won’t flee to the islands or be carried off by seraphim.
Time is my matter, present time, present people,
the present life.

Translation

Mãos dadas

Não serei o poeta de um mundo caduco
Também não cantarei o mundo futuro
Estou preso à vida e olho meus companheiros
Estão taciturnos mas nutrem grandes esperanças
Entre eles, considero a enorme realidade
O presente é tão grande, não nos afastemos
Não nos afastemos muito, vamos de mãos dadas

Não serei o cantor de uma mulher, de uma história
Não direi os suspiros ao anoitecer, a paisagem vista da janela
Não distribuirei entorpecentes ou cartas de suicida
Não fugirei para as ilhas nem serei raptado por serafins
O tempo é a minha matéria, o tempo presente, os homens presentes
A vida presente

Photo by Ben White on Unsplash

a double rapture

Standard

A Double Rapture
Anna Swir
Because there is no me
and because I feel
how much there is no me.

Photo by yousef alfuhigi on Unsplash

encounter

Standard

Encounter
Czeslaw Milosz

We were riding through frozen fields in a wagon at dawn.
A red wing rose in the darkness.
And suddenly a hare ran across the road.
One of us pointed to it with his hand.
That was long ago. Today neither of them is alive,
Not the hare, nor the man who made the gesture.
O my love, where are they, where are they going
The flash of a hand, streak of movement, rustle of pebbles.
I ask not out of sorrow, but in wonder.

Photo by Randy Fath on Unsplash

 

middle age

Standard

Middle Age
Carlos Drummond de Andrade

Translation

Idade madura

Photo by Davide Zeri on Unsplash

the game we’re in

Standard

The Game We’re In
Juan Gelman

If they told me to choose, I’d choose
That wellness of knowing how sick we are,
The bliss of unhappiness.
If they told me to choose, I’d choose
The innocence of not being innocent,
The purity I wallow in for my sins.

If they told me to choose, I’d choose
The very love I hate with,
This hope feeding on desperate loaves.
What’s happening here, gentlemen,
Is that I’m playing the game of death.

Original

El juego en que andamos

Si me dieran a elegir, yo elegiría
esta salud de saber que estamos muy enfermos,
esta dicha de andar tan infelices.
Si me dieran a elegir, yo elegiría
esta inocencia de no ser un inocente,
esta pureza en que ando por impuro.

Si me dieran a elegir, yo elegiría
este amor con que odio,
esta esperanza que come panes desesperados.
Aquí pasa, señores,
que me juego la muerte.

Photo by Riho Kroll on Unsplash

lesser life

Standard

Lesser LIfe
Carlos Drummond de Andrade

Translation

Vida menor

Photo by Martin Adams on Unsplash

popocatepetl

Standard

Popocatepetl
Isaac Berliner

Popo—
laying stolid with a plumage of stone,
crying from your body, with a quiet scream,
are thousands of years.in the bluish dawn of rose,
the sun hides its whitish head
with rainbow stripes,
like a hair band.Winds—
hidden monsters in the gallop,
throwing themselves onto you, yelling as they pillage,
humming songs and whistling
from unknown lands.

what secrets,
stored in the passing of generations,
are hidden inside you?

what scars
stapled in blood,
are engraved in individual stones?

Carry me inside your body, Popo,
stone-like,
conveying
your mysteries in my silence.

Popo—
furtive hoary giant,
the sun throws you a ray
in the darkening moments of dusk,
enlightening you fully.

I see in you now
ancient generations gone,
their blood spilled
from your vertebral column.

What plethora of travelers wandered on your silvery skin?
Have you counted their steps?

At your knees
death announces its journey,
and on your back,
this frigid, whitish inscrutability
pours . . .

 

field of flowers

Standard

Field of Flowers
Carlos Drummond de Andrade

Translation

Campo de Flores

Photo by Darlene Lu on Unsplash