Forefinger tracing knots in plywood,
waiting for the pendulum to swing,
we sip the suspended seconds
stricken in the house of murmurs.
When a word arrives and dissipates,
we gather it in tight-lipped calm,
draping our minds in rigid requiem,
staining them with stilted purity.
Callow feet run in a straight line
from this heavy curtain into the fog
where buzzing flocks of forgeries are
inhaled by a fool's cupped ears.
O old ones, have you heard our cry,
our hearts are skewered and buried
in that rut not far away, beneath
rows and rows of headlights--?
One word from them might suffice
to lift the veil from the way home,
but we slip away like grains of sand,
syllables sifting through the glass.
A dreamless sleep falls from the shimmering leaves. --Sappho fragment, tr. Andrew Bellon I changed, thickened, ...
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