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Poetry in Translation (XXV): Marta Petreu, (b. 1955) – “Psalm”

December 1st, 2005 · Comments Off on Poetry in Translation (XXV): Marta Petreu, (b. 1955) – “Psalm” · PEOPLE, Poetry, Translations

To forget, I have no respite:
while phosphorous sleepless nights are licking my skin and eyes
with their rough tongue full of saliva
What a voluptuous and violent embrace

And what conceit:
as it is not in the power of God to wipe clean the past
(only to speed up disasters, through fulfilment)
(that is why
I would rather pray to you, instead,
the man to whom I gave myself that October birthday
please do me a small favour
and show a sign of subservience)

There is no anaesthetic, there is no sleep and therefore no forgiveness
I hold in my body the past and face up to the ashen future
There is no sleep, only that sharp transparency
(as we stand, face to face, I and the nothingness)
only this butcher’s tenderness, my blood that has fallen in love
popping up like champagne through the pores of my skin

The claw of which God will pluck me by the scruff of my neck?

O, Domine meo, it is not in your power to wipe clean not even for one night
the past
you cannot give either rest or forgetting
in me the puppies of fear grow
they multiply they strive and reach full maturity
You cannot give either rest or forgetting:
with rough phosphorous tongues they taste my skin my eyes
What a hungry pack and what a wonderful hunting feast
in the making

Rendered in English by Constantin ROMAN
(December 2005)

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