Friday, September 9, 2016

Waking Up
by Jorge Luis Borges (translated by Alastair Reid)

Daylight leaks in, and sluggishly I surface
from my own dreams into the common dream
and things assume again their proper places
and their accustomed shapes.  Into this present
the Past intrudes, in all its dizzying range--
the centuries-old habits of migration
in birds and men, the armies in their legions
all fallen to the sword, and Rome and Carthage.

The trappings of my day also come back:
my voice, my face, my nervousness, my luck.
If only Death, that other waking-up,
would grant me a time free of all memory
of my own name and all that I have been!
If only morning meant oblivion!

El despertar
Jorge Luis Borges

Entra la luz y asciendo torpemente
de los sueños al sueño compartido
y las cosas recobran su debido
y esperado lugar y en el presente
converge abrumador y vasto el vago
ayer: las seculares migraciones
del pájaro y del hombre, las legiones
que el hierro destruyó: Roma y Cartago.
Vuelve también mi cotidiana historia:
mi voz, mi rostro, mi temor, mi suerte.
¡Ah, si aquel otro despertar la muerte
me deparara un tiempo sin memoria
de mi nombre y de todo lo que he sido!
¡Ah, si en esa mañana hubiera olvido!

Friday, July 22, 2016

Guillaume Apollinaire

In my house I want:
A reasonable woman,
A cat passing among the books,
And friends in every season,
Whom I cannot live without.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

by Charles Bukowski

well, where are they?
the Hemingways, the T.S. Eliots, the Pounds, the
e.e. cummingses, the Jefferses, the William Carlos
where is Thomas Wolfe?  William
Saroyan?  Henry
Miller, Celine, Fante, Dos
where are
they?  dead, I know
but where are the re-
placements, where are the new

to me, the present gang is a bunch of

where is Carson McCullers?

where is one?
where are
any?  where are

what has occurred, what has failed to

where is our Turgenev?  our

I don't ask for
Dostoevski, there's no replacement
Feodor Mikhailovich.

these now, what are
they:  making their tiny
splashes, what
practiced ineptness, what
boredom of
language, what a
crass bastardly trick
against print
against pages
against inhaling and

there is
this loss of a natural and
beautiful force.

I look around and
I look
I say:  where are the

Friday, March 18, 2016

"I have given up..."
by Saigyō Hōshi (translated by Stephen D Carter)

I have given up
   all hope of having visitors
     in my mountain home.
If not for solitude,
how dismal my life would be!

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

by Nikolai Morshen (translated by Bradley Jordan)

He lived so little: only forty years.
In words like these there’s not an ounce of truth.
He saw two wars, a coup d'état,
six governments, three famines,
four leaders, two true loves.
In terms of years – that makes about 500.