WON’T BE ENOUGH
Translated by Thomas Cooper
I would look you in the eye, but perhaps I won’t be enough,
a thousand sounds bellow, bore between us,
and not just the music, your pupils are cold,
shameful joy, that with you all day.
Shameful joy, that with you all day
I would be, like one can only be when one is alone,
and I would listen to your heart through your chest,
running my eyes over the squealing rose.
Running my eyes over the squealing rose,
the pores, I would scour fear from you,
rub desire under your skin in an embrace,
break my mouth on the glass of the shower.
Break my mouth on the glass of the shower,
while I lean on you, embrace your legs,
but the air runs out, as you are cleansed,
and with me, memory becomes rigid around you.
With me, memory becomes rigid around you,
from every kind and wearied motion.
Cures tried, best forgotten,
they open spaces to be filled.
They open spaces to be filled
in a woman if love has found a place inside her.
Therapies that worked, with misleading descriptions,
for what has worked in you is inoperable.
What has worked in you is inoperable
from me, like the first dream in a waking beast,
life in dozing man. For a moment
every bearer is an impression that can be removed.
Every bearer is an impression that can be removed
in existence, how many dear words fell aside, next to us,
unnoticed. In the meantime the smallest fears
were etched in. The wrinkled columns of our own forest.
The wrinkled columns of our own forest were etched in
underneath the skin, in front of the face, behind the voice
and eyes. Will these gazes survive my aging?
You read aloud, and your glasses gently tip to one side.
You read aloud, and your glasses gently tip to one side,
when you notice the first gray hair on my head
in your lap, for you cannot go gray with just anyone,
and finally I look you in the eye, but perhaps I won’t be enough.
Daniel Ferman: Lea
As if you had never had a face.
You turn away, throw yourself against the wall.
I know if you had been programed to move
You would be pulling down your red blouse,
But you’ve been standing like this for months,
Your hair, ironed straight as an arrow, cannot be disheveled.
Untouchable, like the pieces resembling body parts,
pieces out of which you were assembled.
Your arms cannot rotate at the shoulder, your legs
cannot bend at the knee, nor your torso at the hip,
and the insensibility of the rigid gesture cannot be translated.
The gesture that pushes its way between us, like
your existence between disassembly and assembly.
A blouse pulled tight over your head, your arm propped
against the wall. You could be an unfamiliar woman
from the underpass, a blue-stocking brought home
from the library, a one-night stand explained
by alcohol, or my true love before first sight,
who undresses, removes her materials without eye contact.
But you could even be what they really meant you to be:
a statue, with a wig and feelings bundled into
the stump of a head. A doll on which they forgot to set up
the face. A submissive window-display babe,
wrapped in tops, hose, and miniskirts
waiting to be peeled off. You’re a toy accoutrement,
which someday will be on display in the main square.
You’ll throw yourself against the wall of the church,
so that the faithful can watch you before the service.
How you just lean against the crumbling wall,
with your concave back, pulling down your red blouse,
faded with artificial light, for a time beyond reckoning.
And the ultramarine of your skirt
promising redemption at the wailing wall,
until they carry you away for good.
IN YOUR DIFFERENCE
in your travels,
in your home,
in your room,
in your church,
in your village,
in your strolls,
in your forest,
in your garden,
in your breath
in your loneliness,
in your desires
where there is no room
for a stranger