fredag 18 juli 2014

Love and Marriage in Birdworld

I kväll hägrar (hihi!) det fyra fågeldikter i bloggen. Vi börjar med en häger bland hästar.

Hope and Love, by Jane Hirshfield (f. 1953)
(From The Lives of the Heart. New York : HarperCollins, 1997.)

All winter
the blue heron
slept among the horses.
I do not know
the custom of herons,
do not know
if the solitary habit
is their way,
or if he listened for
some missing one –
not knowing even
that was what he did –
in the blowing
sounds in the dark.
I know that
hope is the hardest
love we carry.
He slept
with his long neck
folded, like a letter
put away.


Vi fortsätter med en studie av flamingon.

Flamingo Watching, by Kay Ryan (f. 1945)
(From Flamingo Watching. Copper Beech Press, 1994.)

Wherever the flamingo goes,   
she brings a city’s worth
of furbelows. She seems
unnatural by nature—
too vivid and peculiar
a structure to be pretty,
and flexible to the point   
of oddity. Perched on
those legs, anything she does   
seems like an act. Descending   
on her egg or draping her head   
along her back, she’s
too exact and sinuous
to convince an audience
she’s serious. The natural elect,   
they think, would be less pink,   
less able to relax their necks,   
less flamboyant in general.
They privately expect that it’s some   
poorly jointed bland grey animal   
with mitts for hands
whom God protects.


Och så flyger vildgässen hem igen.

Wild Geese, by Mary Oliver (f. 1935)
(From Dream Work. Boston, Mass. : Atlantic Monthly Press, c1986.)

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
For a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
     love what it loves.
Tell me about your despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting --
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.


Slutligen ingår bloggen äktenskap med både svan och kråka.

On the marriage of friends, by Greg Delanty (f. 1958)
(From Collected poems, 1986-2006. Manchester : Carcanet ; 2006.)

So you have chosen the way of the swan;
the way, perhaps, that is not natural
to everyone, but I will not harp on
about heron, bluebird or dotterel,

nor how the male flycatcher pairs
with two females, keeping a mile between,
so neither cops how the other shares
the same philandering gentleman.

Did you know the life-coupling way
of the swan is also that of the crow?
And there'll be crow-black days
you'll caw at each other with blind gusto.

But there'll be times when you'll sing
the duet of the black-collared barbet,
with the first part of the song sung
by one and the second by the mate.

We wish you now many such duet days
and sing for you like the red-eyed vireo
who sings nonstop through the summer blaze
on this day you take the way of swan & crow.

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