Thursday morning, May 4,2017 at 10: 15 a.m.; Tuesday afternoon, September 19 at 5: 50 p.m.
suspended from a nail
- my translation of Basho's "Sabishisa ya/kugi ni kaketaru/
on the wall where a picture hangs
a cricket... "
- my translation of Basho's "Shizukasa ya/ e kakaru kabe no/
What one realizes
when watching the smallest creatures—
the crickets, cicadas, the ants—
live out their lives, their destinies,
is the absolute fragility of all existence,
its arbitrariness, its cruelty... its brevity.
This knowledge becomes a part of you—
(it humbles you for the briefest of moments,
and those moments linger—then you come back
to who you are—and you know you don't want
to be clever or manipulative of others,
their emotions.You don't want
to deceive them.But you also realize
this is the real world and people are who they are—
self-seeking advantage-takers and manipulators,
deceivers and self-deceivers, even when in love,
and even sometimes, perhaps, when facing death—
we can't get past ourselves, our bad habits,
behaviors, and I don't know what we can do.)
I keep thinking of this poem I keep reading over
and over again by a poet who doesn't know me,
doesn't want to know me—and what she says
about herself (Mary Magdalene?) , about us,
about you and me—well...it'strue.Truer
than true.And why are women much smarter
than men, and then not?Yes, why, and then not?
Not.Thanks for the provision—yes, thanks a lot—
no consolation, no solace no matter what, nothing—
nothing save my arms emptied, my hands emptying.
This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.I would like to translate this poem