Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
irinia Jul 10
to kindness, to knowledge,
we make promises only; pain we obey.
Marcel Proust

I was born into this world
of people without
guardian angels but
loveless pockets
no body to see how
pain was incessantly
turned into tombstones
a carousel of masks and
defeated laughter
blinded by deceitful colours.
triumphant sidewalks not afraid
to be crushed by the weight of
humiliated bodies.
-he was secretly dreaming
how vanilla ice-cream would taste
on her lips-
people got used to bringing their thoughts
to the drug stores
as if walking their pets
weeping was incomprehensible
forbidden by law.
-she was secretly dreaming
of him smelling like tobacco,
white musk and cedarwood -

this world survived because of
all the hidden dimensions,
I was handed over a disembodied world
to dream of but
the metaphors were of
no use
to moonless people
their hands paralyzed.
oh, can anybody see?
the unspoken terror
that time stood still.
-I was secretly dreaming of destroying
this world with fresh words, with
the craziness of feeling alive-

I inherited the secret passion
of some unknown promises and
never-whispered desires
the only teacher I could find -
my manic heart
unbearable the pains of
growing a mind.

they wanted to keep it simple:
to cry, to speak, to fall in love.
muted seagulls
loveless alphabets
into this world
waiting for the sun to shed
its hidden self
of blindness
irinia Jul 8
Blue nothing. She considered miles
out the high window in the stairwell.
First, simple paper distances her finger

could trace, point A to point B.
Then the more difficult measurement,
that of closeness, like bonded atoms.

And then, hypothetical expanses
like those of the heart's vessels -
their length could circle the globe twice.

A plane seemed to crawl across the glass,
leaving a necklace vapor trail. She believed
in possibilities, that every atom that could exist,

already did, but still, she could not wear the red,
strapless dress she no longer owned,
couldn't lift her hair for his fingertips to clasp

pearls at the nape of her neck, his breath
fastening a shiver between her shoulder blades
down the small dip of her back.

She wanted to look into a large aperture
telescope, to view the farthest reaches
of visible space, where no energy had ever been

destroyed, to see into the incalculable vastness
of him in their living room downstairs, him
on the brown sofa reading. She wanted

him to put down his book, to think of her
on the landing, waiting. For him to move
exponentially faster, up the stairs two at a time.

by Jo Brachman
irinia Jul 8
I wait each night for a self.
I say the mist, I say the strange
tumble of leaves, I say a motor
in the distance, but I mean
a self and a self and a self.
A small cold wind
coils and uncoils in the corner
of every room. A vagrant.
In the dream
I gather my life in bundles
and stand at the edge of a field
of snow. It is a field I know
but have never seen. It is
nowhere and always new:
What about the lives
I might have lived?
And who? And who
will be accountable
for this regret I see
no way to avoid? A core,
or a husk, I need to learn
not how to speak, but from where.
Do you understand? I say
name, but I mean a counduit
from me to me, I mean a net,
I mean an awning of stars.

by Charif Shanahan
irinia May 22
A drop of water fell on my hand,
drawn from the Ganges and the Nile,

from hoarfrost ascended to heaven off a seal's whiskers,
from jugs broken in the cities of Ys and Tyre.

On my index finger
the Caspian Sea isn't landlocked,

and the Pacific is the Rudawa's meek tributary,
the same stream that floated in a little cloud over Paris

in the year seven hundred and sixty-four
on the seventh of May at three a. m.

There are not enough mouths to utter
all your fleeting names, O water.

I would have to name you in every tongue,
pronouncing all the vowels at once

while also keeping silent — for the sake of the lake
that still goes unnamed

and doesn't exist on this earth, just as the star
reflected in it is not in the sky.

Someone was drowning, someone dying was
calling out for you. Long ago, yesterday.

You have saved houses from fire, you have carried off
houses and trees, forests and towns alike.

You've been in christening fonts and courtesans' baths.
In coffins and kisses.

Gnawing at stone, feeding rainbows.
In the sweat and the dew of pyramids and lilacs.

How light the raindrop's contents are.
How gently the world touches me.

Whenever wherever whatever has happened
is written on waters of Babel

By Wisława Szymborska
irinia May 22
Faith is in you whenever you look
At a dewdrop or a floating leaf
And know that they are because they have to be.
Even if you close your eyes and dream up things
The world will remain as it has always been
And the leaf will be carried by the waters of the river.

You have faith also when you hurt your foot
Against a sharp rock and you know
That rocks are here to hurt our feet.
See the long shadow that is cast by the tree?
We and the flowers throw shadows on the earth.
What has no shadow has no strength to live.

By Czeslaw Milosz
irinia May 19
that moment
as fragile as a snowflake
when I slip into another's poem
and something inside twinkles
like a firefly full of wonder

"Be the bliss of my trembling
like a tree’s leaves:
give a name, give a beautiful name
a pillow to this disintegration."
— János Pilinszky
irinia May 18
I am black with love
neither boy nor nightingale
intact as a flower
I yearn without desire.

I arose amid violets
at the day’s first light,
sang a song forgotten
in the unchanging night.
I said to myself: “Narcissus!”
and a spirit with my face
darkened the grass
with the glow of his curls.

by Pier Paolo Pasolini
Next page