Javier Campos

Javier Campos Poems


Castrated, they explore the universe of the house,
Indiscernible during the most unexpected hours of the day
Nearly somnambulists, they doze from the treacherous cold

There’s no longer even one of Carpe Diem’s rosebuds for you and me,
time made it into dust, and nothing;

I don’t know where your youth or beauty might wander now,

That girl you see
in the corner of the picture
was you
when someone told you to smile

Many centuries ago I too was a young poet
I wrote about hopeless love affairs I surely had
about the life I spent in warm places
or snowy ones

I wasn’t at Woodstock in August 1969
among these peaceful green hills
a summer day about this same time
when it rained three days straight and all that wet

There will always be someone who’ll offer you a hand
and who’ll leave you at the edge of the abyss
or at the door of a well-lit house
or in the only forest where unimaginable pain


What are you going put on this sunny morning?
A dress with birds and polka dots?

It’s hot in the San Joaquin valley at 5 in the afternoon
It’s a dream in flames
A banner in embers that comes down from the mountains

It's ages since I've been
Walking in this unknown valley
I'm the moon-colored character in a silent film
Who climbs in slow motion down from his space ship

I will always be the swallow who returns in flames
The one who lives locked up in this ship of forgetting
Who needs to fly in the forest of your house
And from there to emigrate dejected to the garden on the moon

Who are you? —she said to me with a seductive voice
from under the sheets—while I removed
her transparent white top made of stars,
opened her legs and delicately

Cat without an eye nobody
wants her in pet shelter
poor me says cat
whythis misery thinks looking

Javier Campos Biography

Javier Campos is a poet and a fiction writer. Originally from Chile. He thinks he is a writer from Latin America who lives in another country so his poetry or his fiction has the mixture of that condition. It is the same condition of many writers who must live in others places far away from his/her original 'home'. He also is a regular columnist for some Latin American news papers: El Mostrador de Chile, La República de Nicaragua, Suplemento Tres Mil del diario Colatino de El Salvador, and publish also in this good journal of Brasil: Sibila, and in revista Crítica As a columnist he writes about several issues as social, politic and culture in Latin America, and Latinos in USA. Professor of Fairfield University, Connecticut, Tambien (also) ver (see) Wikipedia He has several International Awards for his poetry and fiction: (1) Primer Premio de Poesia 'Letras de Oro' in EE.UU for Hispanic writers in 1990; (2) Finalista del Premio Poesía 'Casa de las Americas, Cuba,1998, por su libro El astronauta en llamas; (3) Primer premio categoria poema largo en Concurso 'Juan Rulfo' de Radio Francia Internacional en 2002; (4) Tercer premio con un libro inédito de poesía en español en Concurso 'Chicano/Latino writers' en 2005, USA.; (5) Mención Honrosa for his shorstory book 'La mujer que se parecía a Sharon Stone' for the best book published in Chile in 2004 given by the 'I. Municipalidad de Santiago de Chile'. He has been invited to several well known International Poetry Festivals: As Nicaragua (2006 and 2007) , El Salvador (2006) , Cuba (2003) , Guatemala (2007) . In May of 2008 he was invited to the VII International Poetry Festival- and I Central American International Poetry Festival organized by 'Casa de Poesia', Costa Rica. home page: http: //www.faculty.fairfield.edu/jcampos/)

The Best Poem Of Javier Campos


Castrated, they explore the universe of the house,
Indiscernible during the most unexpected hours of the day
Nearly somnambulists, they doze from the treacherous cold

To their ears— genuine furry radars—arrive distant sounds
from the mysterious universe, imperceptible voices,
perhaps signals from other stars

one of them goes to explore this galaxy of furniture,
these melancholy windows, neurotic plants,
these books resting like toads, clothing, bored
dozing on a chair,
or they walk like ghosts around this flesh
embracing other flesh

sniffing the skin of these two fevered lovers curiously
as if discovering that the stars also
hold delicious aromas for
their refined and powerful noses

and then he continues his minute-furry-elephant march,
content to see one more day of his nine lives,
he jumps, light as a feather to the window
where the sun
is and there he relaxes, rubbing himself against the glass,
as though he had finally come upon the beautiful sultry sand
of the moon

and the other one, his friend, his lover, his companion, his pal
—with cats one never knows—
who lies sleeping still,
stirs on the soft sofa and in a sweet dream foresees
a feline catastrophe:

that his friend, his lover, his companion, his pal,
is not by his side;
feels for the first time the bitterness of the morning,
like an ordinary alley cat

and clutching his dark, ominous dreams,
he takes off, a lightning flash in search of the disappeared

and walks, meowing with the pain of an injured animal
as if he had received some insensitive hunter’s bullet
or the cruelest torturer’s torment

and through the galaxy he goes, distraught, crazed, depressed,
dodging with lightning speed the rocks passing overhead,
meteorites like atomic bombs could turn him to dust,
the universe’s lethal radiation would leave him worse off than a wet cat,
the sunlight almost blinds him, but the cat has
a sophisticated system that distinguishes the bad light
from the good

he scans, manages to spot among all the darkness that envelops
a hidden mouse, that little creature sweating at the thought of being devoured,
but he keeps walking (not preoccupied by hunger)
surrounded by other planets,
passing below the heavenly bodies, the star, the galaxies,
silently he enters the sun’s burning rays and leaves
almost singed, sweating,

his beautiful coat smells burnt;

and when finally he arrives at the window
and sees his friend, his companion, his lover, his pal,
so indifferent, lying belly up,
satisfied, enjoying the marvelous morning light,

he caresses, bites him, licks him, sniffs him, awakens him;

and the other, surprised:

caresses him, bites him, licks him, sniffs him, kisses him.

(Translated from Spanish by Alba Skar and Jessica Treat)

***The poem “Cats” got the First Prize –in the long poem category- in the prestigious International Award Contest “Juan Rulfo” 2002 from Radio France and Radio H.J.C.K, Colombia

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