Wednesday, 21 September 2016

he locks the car and knows... Kees Ouwens

I haven’t yet been allotted to death
the horizon still keeps its distance
across the triple verge – the middle,
the edges – the ripe light
strokes down, the open pulse
of autumn, the low sun
at afternoon’s end, the vein of gold
lies bare, unreal
green the grass, what has to be said
has made itself fit to be seen, what appears
and cannot be said otherwise
speaks for itself, I’ve believed
my eyes, I’ve not
been blind to it,
I’ve gone green-eyed
with the measure, the extent
to which it departs
leaves behind the destination
from which it springs
towards which it turns away
by order of the silence
one still evening
in order to drive away doom
in a world of standstill
becoming one with the message
there is a right to calmness
after time spent in the surprising
and a night that has a few hours
when daylight’s on the retreat

where to?

why his question
if the road is known, and the answer
will not have been his salvation?

Kees Ouwens (1944 – 2004) The Netherlands
Translated by Francis R. Jones
Source: Poetry International

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