Treasure Island

Franz Werfel

(10 September 1890 – 26 August 1945 / Prague)

One Hour Ater The Dance Of Death


I lay in the abyss, where twisting squeezing
The lowest form of life pushed itself peristaltically.
Where slippery and slimy worm and eel entwined,
I was a worm myself, overwhelmed with exhaustion.

This lasted an eon before I succeeded,
And one of my senses could slowly lift itself up,
The sense of hearing. Listening, it scouted out if
The dancer, Death, had finally waltzed into the distance.

I eavesdrop breathless. Then a sparkling chromatic scale
Flows wanly from the open window next door.
Maybe Death is sitting there tuning his piano.

And while my life enjoys zestfully eating and fills with gas,
I feel him lean in that requisite little side room,
Where he invisibly reads, rustling the evening paper.

Submitted: Wednesday, April 21, 2010

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