Skip to content

Log Out




the droning dies down, the sea steps back, leaving salt
on stone foreheads, on the years’ shells and that
which we so stubbornly call poetry.
come, sit here, on this wind
and wave crumbled shore and let’s be silent
for so long, till night lowers eyelids on the open sea
and no one remembers our words,
only sensing the vanished existence like a cool breeze
that we once called poetry


crushed fragments of shell
on the park’s gravel path,
long-drawn and happy whispers in the pergola, on the other side
of the pond covered in duckweed, old
stone lions romantically leer
at the rising telltale moon,
no death having occurred, if you don’t count
snails, that don’t count, all around
and alongside


a cluster of junipers on the slope, pale arctic moss,
in the hollow of the larynx
like the rustle of the sea in a shell
real, true, no longer confident enough to become
false speech, if only
the runes of Time written on shoreline stone foreheads:
be calm! take a handful of sand from the slope, your only
share, press your cheek to the resinous trunk of the pine
and allow the Latvian poet Inga Gaile to write further:
——how will we be
——when fish will be rain and rain, fish
——and almond eye pits
——won’t hide death?


Translated from the Latvian by Inara Cedrins

Image depends on its subscribers and supporters. Join the conversation and make a contribution today.

+ Click here to make a donation.

+ Click here to subscribe to Image.

The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Receive ImageUpdate, our free weekly newsletter featuring the best from Image and the world of arts & faith

* indicates required