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Five poems from Gabriel St?nescus O speran?? numit? Mayflower  (2008) Translated by heathrow OHare
 
Heathrow OHare
FOTO:  Dana Lizac

RITE OF PASSAGE WITH MEMORY

Our torments brew inside us
With the force of time in the pitch-black chaos
Until dawn when sunlight crushes the last cigarette
Under the tarmacked sole of the breaking day
On a bench someone has left a deck of cards
Absent-mindedly
The wind is reading the tarot
Duke Ellington is practising
From a broken window
Dusk in the Desert on our racked nerves
With age
 An old fears been growing on my chest
 A frail old woman feeds
Octobers sparrows
The trees change their wig
Several times a week
All the important moments of my life
Flash suddenly across my memory
At galactic speed
Along with a teenager masturbating
At the foot of an equestrian statue
The stallion (too) bursts into neighing

ALIEN BODY

Something urges me to hurry up
Live every event in a state of emergency
Grow up in a year as tall as others in seven
A certain alien body looms ever larger
Orbiting around me like a moth
On the smeared glass of the oil lamp
Could Ren Magritte have passed out like that
Transfixed in a flash by a stupendous idea?

STEPPING OUT OF ONES SLEEP

I wake up suddenly from a heavy non-human sleep
All things have a striking new look
Exceedingly real for the place they hold
In the economy of the landscape
I rise from a heavy sleep
As if coming back freshened up from the dead
In a former existence I was a silver candlestick
In another one an apricot-tree in full blossom
How long since my departure?
How many people have forgotten me?
How many have saddened or distressed me?
I wake up from a heavy non-human sleep
All things are new to me
Could I have lost my way?
Why down this street
Nobodys dwelling any longer?

THE PARABLE OF THE SNAIL

In order to illustrate the philosophers old disputes
One should adopt as a model the erosion of time

In order to penetrate the meaning of Ulysses roaming
As a shipwreck of the self
One has to possess the vocation of an exile

In order to grasp the extent to which the images
That reach us are retouched
You should not rush down
The streets of Manhattan
Dodge among the skyscrapers
Under construction on Fifth Avenue
Notice the police ambulance
The torn-down posters the wings of dead birds

As about myself what should I say?
Ive assumed
The shape of the verse in which I dwell.

The Invisible SPIDER

I write. I am the spider
in whose invisible and moist web are trapped
the instincts the obsessions the self-torment
of so many accidental experts
who have criss-crossed their own paths with mine

I write. I try to reproduce the elements
of a senseless dialogue between me and my own self

I write. I see how from an old family photograph
a certain kind of mist is rising
which becomes ever more costly and incomprehensible
because of so many spider webs
that have randomly risen from nowhere

 
Gabriel St?nescu

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