28 June 2010

Some People
by Wislawa Szymborska
Translated by Joanna Trzeciak

Some people fleeing some other people.
In some country under the sun
and some clouds.

They leave behind some of their everything,
sown fields, some chickens, dogs,
mirrors in which fire now sees itself reflected.

On their backs are pitchers and bundles,
the emptier, the heavier from one day to the next.

Taking place stealthily is somebody's stopping,
and in the commotion, somebody's bread somebody's snatching
and a dead child somebody's shaking.

In front of them some still not the right way,
nor the bridge that should be
over a river strangely rosy.
Around them, some gunfire, at times closer, at times farther off,
and, above, a plane circling somewhat.

Some invisibility would come in handy,
some grayish stoniness,
or even better, non-being
for a little or a long while.

Something else is yet to happen, only where and what?
Someone will head toward them, only when and who,
in how many shapes and with what intentions?
Given a choice,
maybe he will choose not to be the enemy and
leave them with some kind of life.

unexpected: October 29, 2009

Rain for weeks on end, it seems. Month of grays. Long days of work, running late late perpetually late. Trudge up familiar stairs and open the door: glowy dining room, mischievous smiling faces. Joyful greetings for a raining Wednesday night.
The table top holds a clutter of laptops, unsteady stacks of books books, family pictures, mini candy bars, bowls of popcorn, mugs of coffee and star crunches.

Two watch the World Series in the next room, giggling when the commentator says that one of the players "drips with confidence." We laugh at their laughing, start to compose haiku. It doesn't get far. Later, Halloween costumes are being invented and crafted.

Drive home late, it continues to rain. The trees shimmer, there is an eerie fog over the city tonight.

Some things I remember. Some things I forget.

10 June 2010

where have you been all my life?

Mary Oliver

Another morning and I wake with the thirst
for the goodness I do not have. I walk
out to the pond and all the way God has
given us such beautiful lessons. Oh Lord,
I was never a quick scholar but sulked
and hunched over my books past the hour
and the bell; grant me, in your
mercy, a little more time. Love for the
earth and love for you are having such a
long conversation in my heart. Who
knows what will finally happen or
where I will be sent, yet already I have
given a great many things away, expecting
to be told to pack nothing, except the
prayers which, with this thirst, I am
slowly learning.