This poem will be a poem of another century, not different from this one.
This poem will be securely concealed under heaps of words, until
between the last sand grains of the hourglass,
like a ship inside a bottle, it will be seen, this poem:
the poem that will speak of innocence. And common people that ostensibly
were shaped by time, like tardy gods,
will listen to it for no reason that wasn’t there before,
rise their backs like snakes
from the junk, and there won’t be anywhere else
to hurry from, and it won’t have an end
different from its beginning. It won’t be rich
and won’t be poor. It won’t bother anymore to promise
and keep or carry out its utterances
and won’t scrimp, or sail there from here.
This poem, if it will speak to you, woman, it won’t call you
muse-babe, and won’t lie with you like its fathers;
or if to you, man, it won’t kneel or kill, won’t apply makeup
and won’t take off its words and flesh, as it has not has not —
what. Maybe now I’ll call it here, the bad poem
of the century: here, sick with health it barely walks
drags its legs in the viscous current of thoughts of the time
or is stopped to show papers and to have its trivia counted
with arithmetical beads. The inventory: flowers and staples,
corpses (yes, no worry), tall glasses. After staples —
also butterflies, and many footprints and other hooks and shelves
for the arguments of scholarly criticism, and also just to fool around, teeth
against teeth, in the anarchic smiles of a chameleon that doesn’t know
its colors have long since turned into a parable. Or in incomprehensible tranquility
to try someone else’s luck in games of
to and fro that have no goal other than, let’s say,
a bit of fun the length of a line. Spread orange on the blue
of evening sky: now, plaster a little cloud. Climb
on it, see below: sea of sea, sand of sand.
Or fingers. Ten jointed worms
move in inexplicable charm. Now they encircle
a ball whose circle is faulty, wonderful, fleshy, further more,
you may say a word (it’s a fruit, it’s called
a peach). And these words their taste is full of the taste of
its being, of a tone that accompanies the sight with wonder
and not with a thought-slamming sound. And this is the poem:
it sings, let’s say, to the tar that stuck to the foot on the shore,
to plastic bottles, to its own words.
It only sees: black atop white, transparent, or grainy.
It is not less naked than you. Also no more. Only in this exactness
that has no measure, but by the curves of a female-dog,
a pot of cyclamens, or a hair strand on a bathtub railing.
The creatures here don’t want to know. The creatures
there, that only want, are, for now, a possibility
of becoming the creatures that are here, of becoming this antiquity
that has nothing to say other than me, me, without limit
without you. A dog lies on a step in the afternoon
sun, and does not distinguish itself from the flies.