tisdag 22 mars 2016

Water surveys

  Tre nya "Poem of the week".


Eight, by Sue Goyette
(from Ocean : poems. Kentville, NS : Gaspereau Press, 2013.)

The trick to building houses was making sure
they didn’t taste good. The ocean’s culinary taste

was growing more sophisticated and occasionally
its appetite was unwieldy. It ate boats and children,

the occasional shoe. Pants. A diamond ring.
Hammers. It ate promises and rants. It snatched up

names like peanuts. We had a squadron of cooks
specifically catering to its needs. They stirred vats

of sandals and sunglasses. They peppered their soups
with pebbles and house keys. Quarts of bottled song

were used to sweeten the brew. Discussions between
preschool children and the poets were added

for nutritional value. These cooks took turns pulling
the cart to the mouth of the harbour. It would take four

of them to shoulder the vat over, tipping the peeled
promises, the baked dreams into its mouth.

And then the ocean would be calm. It would sleep. Our mistake was thinking we were making it happy.


Names for snow, by Katherine Young
(from Day of the border guards : poems. Fayetteville : University of Arkansas Press, 2014.)

There are hundreds of names for snow, you say,
unlatching the fortochka in morning light.
Let's name them all, love, along the way.

Last night snow danced its boreal ballet
of whorls and swirls, fine arabesques in white—
you know hundreds of names for snow, you say.

Down crystalline paths we slip and spin, surveying
ice falls, tall drifts, single flakes in flight—
my love and I count them along the way.

In my head, sparkling visions start to play:
once love's begun, who knows?  Perhaps we might—
There are hundreds of names for snow, you say,

gently, their meanings subtle, hard to convey—
elusive as love's many meanings last night.
I wait.  You walk—silent—along your way.

Feeling foolish, unschooled, I whisk away
a sudden, childish tear obscuring my sight.
You know hundreds of names for love, you say:
I'll learn them all, love, along my way.


Paris, by Ingeborg Bachmann
(from Darkness spoken : the collected poems. Brookline, MA : Zephyr Press, 2006.)

Spun upon the wheel of night
the lost are sleeping
in the echoing passage-ways below
yet where we are, is light.

Our arms are full of flowers,
mimosas culled from many years;
gold falls from bridge to bridge
breathless into the river.

The light is split in two,
and the stone is split in two before the gate,
and the basins of the fountains
are already half empty.

How will it be if overwhelmed
even to our reddened hair with homesickness
we stand fast here and ask: how will it be
if we stay here with beauty?

Raised up upon the chariot of light,
even wakeful we are lost
on the paths of the spirits above,
Yet where we are not, is night.

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