Birago Diop – Spirits

Listen to Things

More often than Beings,

Hear the voice of fire,

Hear the voice of water.

Listen in the wind,

To the sighs of the bush;

This is the ancestors breathing.

Those who are dead are not ever gone;

They are in the darkness that grows lighter

And in the darkness that grows darker.

The dead are not down in the earth;

They are in the trembling of the trees

In the groaning of the woods,

In the water that runs,

In the water that sleeps,

They are in the hut, they are in the crowd:

The dead are not dead.

Listen to things

More often than beings,

Hear the voice of fire,

Hear the voice of water.

Listen in the wind,

To the bush that is sighing:

This is the breathing of ancestors,

Who have not gone away

Who are not under earth

Who are not really dead.

Those who are dead are not ever gone;

They are in a woman’s breast,

In the wailing of a child,

And the burning of a log,

In the moaning rock,

In the weeping grasses,

In the forest and the home.

The dead are not dead.

Listen more often

To Things than to Beings,

Hear the voice of fire,

Hear the voice of water.

Listen in the wind to

The bush that is sobbing:

This is the ancestors breathing.

Each day they renew ancient bonds,

Ancient bonds that hold fast

Binding our lot to their law,

To the will of the spirits stronger than we

To the spell of our dead who are not really dead,

Whose covenant binds us to life,

Whose authority binds to their will,

The will of the spirits that stir

In the bed of the river, on the banks of the river,

The breathing of spirits

Who moan in the rocks and weep in the grasses.

Spirits inhabit

The darkness that lightens, the darkness that darkens,

The quivering tree, the murmuring wood,

The water that runs and the water that sleeps:

Spirits much stronger than we,

The breathing of the dead who are not really dead,

Of the dead who are not really gone,

Of the dead now no more in the earth.

Listen to Things

More often than Beings,

Hear the voice of fire,

Hear the voice of water.

Listen in the wind,

To the bush that is sobbing:

This is the ancestors, breathing

Martin Adan – Sea and Shell

A woman and a ball: out of a sudden agreement
the world forms, in its inane rotation.
It begins with the fish, which inhabits the wasteland.

A curve sighs. Nothing swells immediately.
A mathematical point: the sphere,
void, terrestrial, a cloud of breath.

If the chimera doesn’t declare itself
in service and pure verse,
it will wail its words of truth.

The world revolves in an animal rush.
The most humble fish, of all the mud,
mired in the eye, bearing the colure.

A leg, or terror, arises, expands:
the air is the passion of the bather:
light, in recess, flashes and dies out.

A woman and a ball drop from a bristle,
a thin line of ice in which everything concludes,
matter the hand raises into view.

World in the air, simple being and aspect:
algae rising boldly within the descent.
A fish that bites its own tail bleeds mud.

Fabio, this passage and flow and writhing I’m thinking of
is the world: element, eruption: everything, nothing,
in the immense power.

From the rhythm: figures and the first creed,
and happiness, a lesson for the universe as it rolls
into time, pulling along its shell and ancient verse.

translated by Katie Silver and Rick London

poesia, poema

Leon de Grieff – Song of Dinarzada / Canción De Dinarzada

You were mine, burning Dinarzada:
your whole being handed my supplication
your whole being is important to me Nothing!
everything your fire melted into my fire!

You were mine, burning Dinarzada!

Because I care what the grim blind course!
fire for me is desolate
barren plain! Lightened sailed
under the disheveled storm!

All your fire melted into my fire!

Your big heart, your ecstatic soul,
your fine spirit, I beg
surrendered: Nothing donáronse my!
Overnight: give me your arms only,
Dinarzada subtle, dream night …

You were mine, burning Dinarzada!
Everything your fire melted into my fire!

 

and in original Spanish

Tú fuiste mía, ardiente Dinarzada:
todo tu ser se le entregó a mi ruego!
todo tu ser se le rindió a mi Nada!
todo tu fuego se fundió en mi fuego!

Tú fuiste mía, ardiente Dinarzada!

Ya qué me importa el torvo rumbo ciego!
Es lumbre para mí la desolada
llanura yerma! Alígero navego
bajo la tempestad desmelenada!

Todo tu fuego se fundió en mi fuego!

Tu grande corazón, tu alma extasiada,
tu espíritu finísimo, a mi ruego
se rindieron: donáronse a mi Nada!
Noche: en tus brazos únicos me entrego,
Dinarzada sutil, noche soñada…

Tú fuiste mía, ardiente Dinarzada!
Todo tu fuego se fundió en mi fuego!

 

Charles Bukowski – Last Straw

Charles Bukowski one of his last readings in 1980