Thursday, 1 October 2015

February - Mirela Roznoveanu

An Elegant Manner of Settling Accounts…

I’ve been butchering math formulae and metaphors—
All languages – of both Nature and the World – are in shambles
now. Life looks like an atom
whose particles have been eviscerated.
The Mississippi introduced me
to an elegant manner of settling accounts
during the weary green night
of the hour of the final count.
My spectral self was invited to the banquet
of the New Orleans ghosts, at a moldy palace.
I’m gliding through the Mardi Gras night
alongside the Mississippi
toward seas whose anxieties have been euthanized,
so as to welcome my spooky condition
of body and mind from another era.
My life’s projects have all been fulfilled,
the bottom line was drawn,
all former quarrels fading away into the ridiculous.
That wakeful night I felt at a loss what other lies to tell,
since the bottle of rum, gulped down
in the Montego Bay, had failed to do the trick.
The Caribbean should have reconciled me
with my own self and with eternity.
Yet, here I am at one with the sea,
the Cayman Islands staring out in dismay
at the marine cemetery that has just missed its prey.
My human atom’s charged with more
protons and electrons than it has ever been.
I ride the ruffled waves northward,
hurriedly crossing the Mexico Bay,
gliding over the Mississippi marshes through the drizzle,
striking my name off the spectral list
of a New Orleans night club,
sipping a big coffee,
having a dinner to match,
followed by several glasses of Pinot Noir
at my friend the poet’s place.
She can’t help noticing the discrepancy
between the drained-out discourse of the past
and my present highly enriched human state.
In the French Quarter, on the verge of sleep, I capture
the whiff of its magnolia trees’ electric blossoming.

I breathe the silence in,
aware of the impending storm.

Mirela Roznoveanu (born 1947) Romania
Translated by Heathrow O'Hare

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