Blesok no. 80-81, September-December, 2011

I Have a Word

Boris Domagoj Biletić

A Grave below the Hilltop

That gentle February the marble was warm
Was it from the tears of my sisters and mine halted
Somewhere in the air shimmering in the southern sun

Father already distant, all in memories,
Addressed to travelling, the Remainder of his life
Aware only of the finality of his words:
This is the last time I come to see her.

The Alternatives already gloat because I confess:
The hands on the dial of his clock stopped a moment
Like a bird that flies into the space of childhood
With flower in beak after the departure of the woman
Of his life, the Woman, who on her death bed
I saw had that third eye opened

. . .

Frozen winter evenings in the Pula graveyard
Below the myriad smiling extinguished stars
With love crazed conditions embraced approach in proud
Ritual intimation, She whose dearest rests here
And he uprooted among so many departures

The heart’s a cenotaph, the heart’s a private monolith crumbling:
Wherever I turn, whatever I touch, all stone

(Graham McMaster, “The Bridge”, Zagreb, 2004.)

My Locked Father

I let daddy a flower on his trembling soul
He dreams in the smells, colours of his home
Father, I am a city after an earthquake, a city emerging
Father, I am an earthquake into earth’s entrails returning
To your home, distant mother, herself once torn
From our embrace as was her last wish
Stagnant water before the mourner awaited me
Chakavian village of my childhood deserted, Oliver,
Nobody to recognize me in a superficial rush across the graveyard
You are, man, locked, encased wordless
Gone to the other side of the secret, riddle, without lies finally
And what can I do now – the pathos of the living
Is a poor picture made in your, her image
Already hunched consoling myself with the hope you are together
Guarding a tribe with no relics, no Sign
From eternity my father accepts a flower, a bouquet
For himself, for her, for all us still alive, trembling, withered
Glowing from space – continents, planets, galaxies
Of extinguished cities being built by survivors, nameless
Across the seas, across the worlds, live our sleepers
Across the oceans they live – when a word is raft, boat, ship
Underneath us cities sank by earthquakes pulse
Warm places the keys to which even dear God is without

(Nikolai Jeffs, “Vilenica”, Slovenia, 2003.)

Misty Little Poem

The magma, cold, dreadful,
from the melted consciousness
of the lunatic does not bear
new life.

A little misty
domiciled for ever
its his universe
infinity in ice
The heart is
a black hole of sense
and all-light.
Or else death
is that silly
little plaything.
Silence, darkness,

volcanoes from the future
float the galaxies.
A message
they do not understand,
they will not live to see:
put to death
distant from
examiners of sense.

To eternity!
To the mist!
To nothing –
you, ridiculous,
players of fear.

Wings gone back to the gods.

(Graham McMaster, “The Bridge”, Zagreb, 2004.)

In Lithuanian Dreams They Visit Me

to go from this love like from the grave
desire as if she said and leave the story

his world of internal edifices
thought up from the ruins from sickness
is a crazed tectonics of no meaning

in the new novel of the gentle friend
in the pale-lit northern night of fear
in the silence of a hotel room
sounds a good symbiosis

and call the area code of time
that feeds on the lives of nameless
in the angst of the divine order
presentiment of wholly lethal grace

from the grave soar to love from the ruin
as if he had said desire and motionless sunk
deep down there buried with his own

the new little oval picture is a new eye
on the frigid face of homescape marble

over the treetops just an unhistoric cloud
or a flock of curious young songbirds
foggy February at Štinjan graveyard

(Graham McMaster, “The Bridge”, Zagreb, 2004.)

The Empty Quarnero Sea

On her eyelashes dust had gathered
A view of clarity obscured by the background to my story
One whole loose load of a funny life lived
My life of indications scattered across the rocks

The ancient homeland echoes with children’s voices
In a worriless departure for nightly rest, As a vow to the sea
Groans the emptiness of sunset, groan the insides of bodies
All essential clashes in one moment only

In this here as we have it as it oozes salty
Along trembling fingers the empty Quarnero sea, the Sea
Rising in dust to the walls of a little church clothed
In whiteness like a resting ground for Mexican libertarians

That will be shot by a wordless uninvited
Someone in a foreign land with a foreign tongue, In himself
Foreign and empty erasing faces with the final bullet
That which equalizes places and fates

That wraps all in the dust of forgetting, In dust
And ash that remains on one, One hair of mine
Of her eyelashes turned towards the colours of the night
Quarnero awakened by a little flame that is disappearing
As our bodies are in the deathly icy, waxed water

(Nikolai Jeffs, “Vilenica”, Slovenia, 2003.)

Rhetorical Poem

She will live and this is a motive of happiness
For him here who remains hunched and conscious
Of the therapeutic powers of departure’s abandonments
Rationalization so that escaped can be survived
But from which place and where to run, Rhetorics

Talking to oneself will not renew anything
Return nothing to no one neither body neither body
As it becomes an incorporeal memory
Even though awakened live wild young
Framed by an old man’s combinations of pleasure

I do not think that I am writing a love poem
I think I remember without distancing
Into immaturity a certain story that matures
From ruins from the hell of indecision from loneliness
Doctor, did you ever love, Doctor

My chances are great but possibilities zero
Say thus when there is no whole when missing
Is that other side of that same story, Broken off
Seeking its new fresh completeness
Finally awakened and thrown into the world

As if by chance nonetheless opened a flower of womanhood
From the monologue: “What are you doing to me, What are…
I will always, just, I will always…” I then interpret
Foreign words held as my own, foreign
Truth grown into incomprehensibility

I do not think that I am writing a love poem
I think I remember the inessential superficialities
Then why are you so professional, so
Removed from the cashed lives of others
On this dirty, profitable bed, Doctor?

(Nikolai Jeffs, “Vilenica”, Slovenia, 2003.)

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