a nameless quietness fills the frontiers
within which my disgrace cries out.
Maybe that’s why I tell my name to it
when I wish no more
we were together
or when I tire
of bearing myself.
With my own hands
maybe I’ll gather what’s left
of the shiver of the aspen tree
I open the box with hearts
to look for mine inside
and I cannot find it,
and I don’t know
what it is that hurts.
last night I was wearing mysterious pajamas,
while I was dreaming blue angels
and spilling the wine
into thousands of thorns,
into thousands of wounds,
into thousands of bread pieces,
into the transient thousands.
If you’re tired of reading just go home;
it’s late and you haven’t yet bought meat and bread and vegetables
and tears for the existential dressings.
How false the day is when it ends as if it had been something other
than a chapel where you forgot to take off your hat.
And then someone pulled you discreetly aside
Mister, please, you know…!
The false day, lived as if by another
stupider, lazier than you
who has usurped your name, your body, your feelings.
At the edge of the world
called neighborhood a petal
is crying for water
a kid has lost his cap
the future stopped working
tomorrow and the rest of them.
On the expecting sidewalk
the garland of the cross is growing
you pick it up and slowly
it becomes all that you have
and you don’t understand
how come so suddenly
the sky has cleared.
Without knowing I crossed over an angel tonight
my shoulders are white and soft
with his wings. Tonight I’m another—
and the palm of the cross drops a tear
on everything. And all the things walk slowly,
and are almost talking to one another.
Look, the temptations are marching
through the capital of my sight
they are enticing, so alive and so transparent that
you could almost see through them
Prince Atom beheading the poems.
And it’s as if I put on a new
consolation each morning
when I go to take the tram,
tugging at my shirt
as if it were a vision of heaven.
Translated from the Romanian by Andreea Luncan, Luci Shaw, and Jeanne Murray Walker
The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.