Saturday, 12 September 2015

Distant Yet Never So Close - Blanca Varela

distant yet never so close
we walk a sinking earth
lying down on her or simply standing
we feel the bucking of time

it's not about fearful flames
nor ungovernable seas
on this earth mind and body
have the same ebb and flow
in the air that lacks weight
since nothing differs in memory
from what we have seen or imagined

we dream as we live
waiting without certainty or science
the only thing we suspect beyond question
the last chord in this vague music
which envelops us

sometimes doubt
explicit as a flower
persuades us with petals and signs
to swirl on our axis
to thirst
stained with ink to drink imagined lips
from the oldest and most mortal wineskin

the sky would be a dark place
a space of light
in the eye that looks at itself
in the hand that closes
to clutch hold of itself
out in the immense open

when all's said and done like the one who closes the coffin
or a letter
a ray of sunlight
will rise up like a sword to blind us
and gradually open the darkness
like an unexpectedly wounded fruit
like a door which hides nothing
and guards nothing more

Blanca Varela (1926 - 2009) Peru
Translated by Gwen MacKeith and The Poetry Translation Workshop

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