Branch I pick up from the edge of the woods Only to abandon you at the world’s end, Hidden among stones, in the shelter Where the other path invisibly begins (For each earthly instant is a crossroads Where, as summer dies, our shadow Runs to its other land in the same trees, And only rarely in another year Do you pick up that branch with which, distractedly, You bent the summer grasses), Branch, I think of you now that it is snowing. I see you tightening above inscrutable Knots of wood, there where the bark is peeling, With the swell of your dark forces. And I return, a shadow on the white ground, To your sleep that haunts my memory, I pluck you from your dream, which scatters, Being only water filled with light. I take you where the earth Falls suddenly away among the trees And I hurl you with all my power, I listen as you bound from stone to stone. (No, I want you For one moment more. I go on, I take The third path that I saw Vanishing in the grasses, without knowing Why I did not enter those dark thickets Where no birds sing. I go on, soon I am in a house Where once I lived, but whose way Was lost: as in our lives, sometimes Words are said, without our noticing, Into the eternal for the last time. A fire burns still in a deserted room, I listen as it searches in the mirror Of embers for the bough of light, Like the god who believes he will create A life, a spirit, in the night, whose knots Are serried, infinite, labyrinthine. Then I place you gently on a bed of flames, I watch you flare up in your sleep. I bend over you, long afterwards I still hold Your hand. It is childhood, dying.) Yves Bonnefoy, trans. Alison Croggon
Wednesday, January 18, 2012
Thursday, January 5, 2012
Such possessions as gore me pontificate from corners. I am no longer solid but a speech of butterflies. How it spills, when all is said and done: It is hard to see virtue in the cold matter Staining the floor - frills, cups, leaves, arquebuses, Bile - the gross litters of meaning - the new king Knitting up this mess in his brainless sinews, Mere presence the answer to everything, the golden Halo of a new dawn impressing all the peasants.