November 28, 2007

People come, people go
Sometimes without goodbye
Sometimes without hello

Hannah Cole, Life Returned to Normal (The Color Feild), 2006

Piano Solo
-- by Nicanor Parra

translated by William Carlos Williams

Since man's life is nothing but a bit of action at a distance,
A bit of foam shining inside a glass;
Since trees are nothing but moving trees;
Nothing but chairs and tables in perpetual motion;
Since we ourselves are nothing but beings
(As the godhead itself is nothing but God);
Now that we do not speak solely to be heard
But so that others may speak
And the echo precede the voice that produces it;
Since we do not even have the consolation of a chaos
In the garden that yawns and fills with air,
A puzzle that we must solve before our death
So that we may nonchalantly resuscitate later on
When we have led woman to excess;
Since there is also a heaven and hell,
Permit me to propose a few things:

I wish to make a noise with my feet
I want my soul to find its proper body.

The Imperfect Lover
-- by Nicanor Parra

translated by Thomas Merton

A pair of newlyweds
Halt before a tomb
She is in severe white

To observe without being seen
I hide behind a pillar.

While the sad bride
Weeds her father's grave
The imperfect lover devotes himself
To reading a magazine

Love Talk
-- by Nicanor Parra

translated by Miller Williams

We've been here an hour
But you always come up with the same old answer
You want to drive me crazy with your jokes
But I know them by heart.
Don't you like my mouth? Don't you like my eyes?
-Of course I like your eyes
-Than why don't you kiss them?
-What makes you think I'm not going to kiss them?
-Why don't you like my thighs or my breasts?
-What do you mean, I don't like your breasts?
-Then why don't you show it?
Touch them while you have the chance.
-I don't like for you to make me do it.
-Then why did you make me undress?
-I didn't tell you to undress.
You did it yourself
Look, put your clothes on before your husband gets home
Stop talking and put your clothes on
Before your husband gets home.

-- by Nicanor Parra

translated by Miller Williams

A gentleman of good will
Gifted in the personal services
Is available to care for ladies at night
But it must be at night.

Without obligation
Completely responsible
Disposed to matrimony
Provided a lady knows how to move her hips


Anonymous klipschutz said...

Parra fans of the world unite! Roberto Bolano can carry the flag alone only so far.

4:31 PM  
Anonymous jewelry making said...

Wonderful. I have peace after meditating this post. Thank you!

1:17 AM  

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