Posts filed under ‘Tadeusz Różewicz’

Draft of a Modern Love Poem

Tadeusz Różewicz


Listen

And yet white
is best described by gray
bird by stone
sunflowers
in December

love poems of old
were descriptions of the flesh
described this and that
for instance eyelashes

and yet red
should be described
by gray the sun by rain
poppies in November
lips by night

the most tangible
description of bread
is a description of hunger
in it is
the damp porous core
the warm interior
sunflowers at night
the breasts belly thighs of Cybele

a spring-clear
transparent description
of water
is a description of thirst
ashes
desert
it produces a mirage
clouds and trees move into
the mirror

Lack hunger
absence
of flesh
is a description of love
is a modern love poem

Translated by Magnus J. Krynski and Robert A. Maguire

Shall I not compare thee to a summer’s day?

Różewicz is considered by many to be the most influential poet in postwar Poland. His writings are stripped bare of rhetorical excesses and his purpose is simply to create “not verses but facts”. Incidentally these facts have turned into even more powerful metaphors. Milosz once said of him, “Różewicz is a poet of chaos with a nostalgia for order”.

[blackmamba]

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April 24, 2007 at 7:54 am 4 comments


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