What shall I do with this body they gave me,
so much my own, so intimate with me?
For being alive, for the joy of calm breath,
Insomnia. Homer. Taut canvas.
Half the catalogue of ships is mine:
that flight of cranes, long stretched-out line,
that once rose, out of Hellas.
I don’t remember the word I wished to say.
The blind swallow returns to the hall of shadow,
on shorn wings, with the translucent ones to play.
The song of night is sung without memory, though.
This is what I most want
to reach beyond the light
that I am furthest from.
Brothers, let us glorify freedom’s twilight –
the great, darkening year.
Into the seething waters of the night
heavy forests of nets disappear.
A flame is in my blood
burning dry life, to the bone.
I do not sing of stone,
now, I sing of wood.
I have studied the Science of departures,
in night’s sorrows, when a woman’s hair falls down.
The oxen chew, there’s the waiting, pure,
in the last hours of vigil in the town,
She has not yet been born:
she is music and word,
and therefore the untorn,
fabric of what is stirred.
From a fearful height, a wandering light,
but does a star glitter like this, crying?
Transparent star, wandering light
your brother, Petropolis, is dying.
This night is irredeemable.
Where you are, it is still bright.
At the gates of Jerusalem,
a black sun is alight.