2016. december 31., szombat

Ady Endre: Éles szemmel

A világ az izmos butáké,
Kik hangulatban, hitben élnek,
A magamfajta nyomorékok
Csak vizsgálódnak és henyélnek,
Annyi édes, szines hazugság
Környékezi szegény szivünket,
Mért nem vagyunk hivõ buták mind,
Éles szemmel vajon ki büntet,
Nyomorékokat, bennünket?

Szamár hitben, dús hangulatban
Másoknak lelke, teste épül,
Minket vad kerubok ûztek ki
A hazugságok édenébõl,
Hitünk nincsen, hogy szebbnek várjuk
A jövõ percet, mint a tűntet
S a mult örökre hal meg nékünk...
Éles szemmel vajon ki büntet,
Nyomorékokat, bennünket?

2016. december 30., péntek

Rita Dove: Flirtation

After all, there’s no need 
to say anything 

at first. An orange, peeled 
and quartered, flares 

like a tulip on a wedgewood plate 
Anything can happen. 

Outside the sun 
has rolled up her rugs 

and night strewn salt 
across the sky. My heart 

is humming a tune 
I haven’t heard in years! 

Quiet’s cool flesh— 
let’s sniff and eat it. 

There are ways 
to make of the moment 

a topiary 
so the pleasure’s in 

walking through.

2016. december 29., csütörtök

William Stafford: An Afternoon in the Stacks

Closing the book, I find I have left my head
inside. It is dark in here, but the chapters open
their beautiful spaces and give a rustling sound,
words adjusting themselves to their meaning.
Long passages open at successive pages. An echo,
continuous from the title onward, hums
behind me. From in here the world looms,
a jungle redeemed by these linked sentences
carved out when an author traveled and a reader
kept the way open. When this book ends
I will pull it inside-out like a sock
and throw it back in the library. But the rumor
of it will haunt all that follows in my life.
A candleflame in Tibet leans when I move.

2016. december 28., szerda

Csapó Angéla: nem leszek

Én nem leszek az arcodon árnyék,
nem leszek ránc a szemed alatt,
nem sajdulok néha aljasul beléd,
nem leszek nyílt seb, sem a varrat.

Nem költözöm szemedbe - bár szívesen tenném-
a mozdulataid is mind meghagyom neked,
nem leszek nyomasztó, vagy meghitt emlék,
se a sötét titkod, se a szégyened.

Miattam nyugodtan nézhetsz a tükörbe,
- ehhez értek- eltûnök nyomtalan,
miattam se szavad, se élted el nem véted,
a nyakkendõd is biztonságban van.

Két szavad közt a köz, a csend leszek,
úgy maradok meg, észre sem veszed.

2016. december 27., kedd

Stephen Sondheim: Children Will Listen

How do you say to your child in the night
Nothing's all black, but then nothing's all white?
How do you say it will all be all right
When you know that it might not be true?
What do you do?
Careful the things you say
Children will listen
Careful the things you do
Children will see and learn
Children may not obey, but children will listen
Children will look to you for which way to turn
To learn what to be
Careful before you say "Listen to me"
Children will listen

Careful the wish you make
Wishes are children
Careful the path they take
Wishes come true, not free
Careful the spell you cast
Not just on children
Sometimes the spell may last
Past what you can see
And turn against you
Careful the tale you tell
That is the spell
Children will listen

How can you say to a child who's in flight
"Don't slip away and I won't hold so tight?"
What can you say that no matter how slight
Won't be misunderstood?
What do you leave to your child when you're dead?
Only whatever you put in its head
Things that your mother and father had said
Which were left to them too
Careful what you say
Children will listen
Careful you do it too
Children will see
And learn, oh guide them that step away
Children will glisten
Tample with what is true
And children will turn
If just to be free
Careful before you say
"Listen to me"

2016. december 26., hétfő

Thomas Centolella: View #2

It was just one task to recover the taken-for-granted.
There were others. Such as: simply recover.

And then? And then consider
there's no time off for good behavior,

that the city was a carnival of incandescent streets
but also a dim labyrinth, that the beloved bridge

connecting two wonders of solid ground
provided as well a jumping-off point

for those who had lost heart.
That some roads, no matter how far

they take you, will double back.
And then? And then consult the window

for weather. Put on some clothes
and good intentions. Begin again.

2016. december 24., szombat

Zilahy Péter: Egy angyal

akkor jön
hallani szárnysuhogását
biztos mozdulatokkal
húzza le a takarót
már tizenkilenc éve
hogy minden éjjel
feldúlja az ágyam
alaposan végigkutat
végül a hátamra ül
és töpreng
rakosgatja hideg lábait
ha megmozdulok elrepül
ha elrepül megmozdulok

2016. december 23., péntek

Mark Nepo: Breaking Surface

Let no one keep you from your journey,
no rabbi or priest, no mother
who wants you to dig for treasures
she misplaced, no father
who won't let one life be enough,
no lover who measures their worth
by what you might give up,
no voice that tells you in the night
it can't be done.

Let nothing dissuade you
from seeing what you see
or feeling the winds that make you
want to dance alone
or go where no one
has yet to go.

You are the only explorer.
Your heart, the unreadable compass.
Your soul, the shore of a promise
too great to be ignored.

2016. december 22., csütörtök

Mario Benedetti: Canasta

Hoy salí con la canasta
para juntar estímulos de vida
pero no siempre ocurren
o concurren

el cielo es todo nubes
para qué voy a mirarlo
en los zaguanes no hay amantes
y en las miradas no hay preguntas

me siento solo como un islote
al que ni siquiera llegan náufragos

un poema ajeno me hace compañía
pero hay un hemistiquio que me molesta
y no me atrevo a sustituirlo
sería una falta de respeto

ni siquiera tengo una cámara
para fotografiar las esperanzas
las de los otros por supuesto

me enfrento ahora
con una copia de un pintor mío
y mansamente respiro azul

en un estante casi ausente
hay un Vivaldi y un Gardel
en algún soplo
despertaré sin mis temores
y podré entrar en esas tiendas
pero hoy no puedo

me siento casi sordomudo
para la música y las caricias
miro hacia abajo
hacia mis palmas
y la canasta sigue vacía

Mario Benedetti: Shopping Basket

Today I went out with my basket
to stock up on ways to lift my spirits
but they're not easy to come by
or come across

the sky is nothing but clouds
why bother looking up
in the entryways there are no lovers
in others' gazes no questions

I'm as lonely as a tiny isle
where not even castaways set foot

I've got someone else's poem for company
but there's a hemistich I find annoying
and I don't dare replace it
that would be rude

I don't even have a camera
to snap pictures of this or that hope
other people's of course

I'm face-to-face now
with a print by a favourite painter
and meekly I inhale its restful blues

on an almost nonexistent rack
I spot Vivaldi and Gardel
perhaps in a little while
I'll wake up without my gloom
then I can rummage through those shops
but today I can't

I feel almost like a deafmute
when it comes to music and caresses
I look down
at the palms of my hands
and my basket is still empty

--translated by Louise B. Popkin

2016. december 21., szerda

Lackfi János: Ha negyvenéves

Ha negyvenéves elmúltál, egy éjjel
felriadsz, hogy most már aztán elég,
kabátba bújsz, fogsz pakli cigarettát,
s magad mögött hagysz házat és hazát,
a helyet, hol vécére sötétben kitaláltál,
hol ismerted a villanykapcsolókat,
villák, kések helyét szívben, fiókban,
s hol hozzád tartozók szuszogtak a sötétben,
s ha szerencsés vagy, van még pár jó éved,
használd ki hát, összehozhatsz simán
újabb lakást új villanykapcsolókkal,
helyet, hol vécére sötétben kitalálsz,
hol hozzád tartozók szuszognak a sötétben,
s kések rejtőznek szívben és fiókban,
s akkor egy éjjel felriadsz, hogy elég,
kabátba bújsz, fogsz pakli cigarettát,
magad mögött hagysz... és ez így megy tovább.

2016. december 20., kedd

Nikki Giovanni: Nikki-Rosa

childhood remembrances are always a drag  
if you’re Black
you always remember things like living in Woodlawn  
with no inside toilet
and if you become famous or something
they never talk about how happy you were to have  
your mother
all to yourself and
how good the water felt when you got your bath  
from one of those
big tubs that folk in chicago barbecue in  
and somehow when you talk about home  
it never gets across how much you
understood their feelings
as the whole family attended meetings about Hollydale
and even though you remember
your biographers never understand
your father’s pain as he sells his stock  
and another dream goes
And though you’re poor it isn’t poverty that
concerns you
and though they fought a lot
it isn’t your father’s drinking that makes any difference  
but only that everybody is together and you
and your sister have happy birthdays and very good  
and I really hope no white person ever has cause  
to write about me
because they never understand
Black love is Black wealth and they’ll
probably talk about my hard childhood
and never understand that
all the while I was quite happy

2016. december 19., hétfő

Kim Addonizio: Fine

You're lucky. It's always them and not you. The family trapped in the fire, the secretary slain in the parking lot holding her coffee and Egg McMuffin, the ones rushed to Emergency after the potluck. You're lucky you didn't touch the tuna casserole, and went for the baked chicken instead. Your friend with breast cancer that was detected too late, metastasized to the lymph nodes, the lungs, a few months to live, lucky there's no history in your family. Another friend's fiance, heart attack at forty-seven. You lie in bed at night, your head on your lover's chest, and you're grateful. Your teenaged daughter, unlike all her friends, hasn't become sullen or combative, addicted to cigarettes or booze. She's not in the bathroom with her finger down her throat to throw up dinner. You and your family are fine. You're happy. It's like you're in your own little boat, just you, sailing along, and the wind is up and nothing's leaking. All around you you can see other boats filling up, flipping over, sliding under. If you look into the water you can watch them for a while, going down slowly, getting colder and farther away. Soon, if nothing happens to you, if your luck holds, really holds, you'll end up completely alone.

2016. december 17., szombat

Finy Petra: Béla szemei

Van egy nyiladék a gyertyánok
Ezüstbőrű törzsei alatt
Ott mindig omlós a föld
És annyira puha mint egy paplan

Az erdész ott lelt rá a kéttucat
Nyákos gumióvszerre
Nem tudta hogy irigykedjen
vagy undorodjon inkább

Az egyik kondom egy arra turkáló
Vaddisznó szemére tapadt
Aki minden fának vakon nekirontott
És ilyenkor a nyakcsigolyái úgy nyekkentek
Mint a kerti hintaágy
Ha alkonyatkor fáradtan belezuhan a szél

Egy nyugdíjas
Kirándulócsapat idős hölgytagja mellett is
Eltrappolt a vaddisznó
És az aszony ábrándozó tekintettel jegyezte meg:

"A kaucsuk pont úgy szorul
Az állat ijedten lüktető szemgolyóira
Mint a szürkehályog szegény
Bélám megfakult szemeire"

2016. december 16., péntek

Mark Nepo: Three faces

I have carried three faces
across my life, though from within,
it’s clear, they have carried me:

a woman who can stare through
the leaves of any tree, who names the
tree by the birds who sing in it

a man who works hard at
clearing paths in order to stop
where the path ends, and listen

and a small child with the heart
of a horse, eager to sniff out any
thing alive and run to it.

Together, they have led who I
thought I was through openings
wide enough for only
what is essential.

2016. december 15., csütörtök

Pablo Neruda: Ausencia

Apenas te he dejado,
vas en mí, cristalina
o temblorosa,
o inquieta, herida por mí mismo
o colmada de amor, como cuando tus ojos
se cierran sobre el don de la vida
que sin cesar te entrego.

Amor mío,
nos hemos encontrado
sedientos y nos hemos
bebido toda el agua y la sangre,
nos encontramos
con hambre
y  nos mordimos
como el fuego muerde,
dejándonos heridos.

Pero espérame
guárdame tú dulzura.
Yo te daré también
una rosa.

Pablo Neruda: Absence

I have scarcely left you
when you go in me, crystalline,
or trembling,
or uneasy, wounded by me
or overwhelmed with love, as when your eyes
close upon the gift of life
that without cease I give you.

My love,
we have found each other
thirsty and we have
drunk up all the water and the blood,
we found each other
and we bit each other
as fire bites,
leaving wounds in us.

But wait for me,
keep for me your sweetness.
I will give you too
a rose.

2016. december 13., kedd

Judith Viorst: A whole other stage

I've reached the stage where my lawyer, my broker, my allergist, and my president are all significantly younger than I.
I've reached the stage where I recognize, when I'm byuing new living-room drapes or a new set of dishes, that they're likely to be the last ones that I'll ever buy.
And when I'm starting to tell my friends some really terrific story, and I ask them whether I've told them this story before, and no matter what story I've started to tell, they say yes,
I know I have reached a whole other stage.

I've reached the stage where I find that most of the spaces I used to park in are now too small for my car.
I've reached the stage where I'm no longer able to call myself middle-aged because that's what my children are.
And when going to see two movies at two separate theaters on the same day, followed by eating a sausage-and-anchovy pizza, is what I'm defining as orgiastic excess,
I know that I have reached a whole other stage.

I've reached the stage where a lot of the reading I'm doing is at the market checking salt-free and fat-free and expiration dates.
I've reached the stage where nobody bothers to look at my driver's license when I want to purchase tickets at senior rates.
And when I'm out of town and I phone my husband at six A.M., and I ring and ring but he doesn't answer the phone, and my first thought is not infidelity but cardiac arrest,
I know that I have reached a whole other stage.

I've reached the stage where the people with whom I once discussed Marcel Proust are discussing inheritance taxes and living wills.
I've reached the stage where I couldn't leave my house for twenty-four hours unaccompanied by eight different kinds of pills.
And when I have to admit that, offered the choice, I'd - unhesitatingly - give up a night of wilde rapture with Denzel Washington for a nice report on my next bone densitiy test,
I know that I have reached a whole other stage.

2016. december 12., hétfő

Nikki Giovanni: I Take Master Card (Charge Your Love To Me)

I've heard the stories
'bout how you don't deserve me
'cause I'm so strong and beautiful and wonderful and you could
never live up to what you know I should have but I just want to let you know:

I take Master Card

You can love me as much as your heart can stand
then put the rest on
account and pay the interest
each month until we get this thing settled

You see we modern women do comprehend
that we deserve a whole lot more
than what is normally being offered but we are trying
to get aligned with the modern world

So baby you can love me all
you like 'cause you're pre-approved
and you don't have to sign on
the bottom line

Charge it up
'til we just can't take no more
it's the modern way

I take Master Card
to see your Visa
and I deal with a Discovery but I don't want any American
Express 'cause like the Pointer Sisters say:  I need a slow hand.

2016. december 10., szombat

Szabó T. Anna: A nő, az akkor nő...

A nő, az akkor nő, amikor lelkes,
ha táncra kész, de rögtön nem rohan -
pár trükköt előbb a férfitől elles,
mert hasznát veszi egyszer biztosan.

A nő, az akkor nő, amikor bírja
az ugratást, de nem ugráltatod,
mert az életét saját maga írja,
és nem úgy fütyül, ahogy akarod.

A nő, az hallgat minden okos érvre,
és hoztok együtt új törvényeket,
a nő meghallgat, hogy a szavad értse,
és engedhetsz is, hisz ő is neked.

A nő, az mindig tisztán látja célját,
de nem gátolja a te célodat,
a vak és önző törtetésen túllát -
egymásnak dőltök: ő is támogat.

A nő az akkor nő, ha sosem gyáva
szívvel érteni másokat s magát,
ha magán át a te arcod is látja,
mert te is látod őt magadon át.

A nő, az képes hallgatni a csendet,
és hordozni a legbelső magányt,
és meglátni a profánt és a szentet
a tiszta s torz tükörben egyaránt.

A nő...? Ez puszta szó. Csak puszta ketrec.
A nő: az ember. Más törvénye nincs.
Akkor kimondom, itt nincs már több kecmec:
nem a vagina teszi. A gerinc.

2016. december 9., péntek

pleasefindthis: the world is better backwards

I never saw you again. You slammed the door as you came in. We yelled at each other about something that just shouldn't fucking matter but for some reason, it does. It happened. We spoke softly. We were in bed. I told you
"I love you."
You said the same. We went to movies and parties and friends and ate and drank and made love.
It all ended with my eyes meeting yours for the first time and the sudden, extreme  feeling of expectation.
And now, how can I miss what has never existed.

2016. december 8., csütörtök

Anna Swir: Poetry reading

I'm curled into a ball
like a dog
that is cold.

Who will tell me
why I was born,
why this monstrosity
called life.

The telephone rings. I have to give
a poetry reading.

I enter.
A hundred people, a hundred pairs of eyes.
They look, they wait.
I know for what.

I am supposed to tell them
why they were born,
why there is
this monstrosity called life.

--translated by Czeslaw Milosz and Leonard Nathan

2016. december 7., szerda

Szabó T. Anna: A férfi akkor férfi...

A férfi akkor férfi, hogyha lelkes,
ha táncra kész, de rögtön nem rohan -
előbb pár lépést a nőtől is elles,
mert hasznát veszi egyszer biztosan.

A férfi akkor férfi, hogyha bírja
az ugratást - de nem ugráltatod,
mert az életét saját maga írja,
és nem úgy fütyül, ahogy akarod.

Az okos érvre mindig kész a férfi,
és hoztok együtt új törvényeket,
mert amit mondasz, nemcsak hallja: érti,
és engedhetsz is, hisz ő is neked.

A férfi mindig tisztán látja célját,
de nem gátolja a te célodat,
a vak és önző törtetésen túllát -
egymásnak dőltök: ő is támogat.

A férfi akkor férfi, ha nem gyáva
szívvel érteni másokat s magát,
ha magán át a te arcod is látja,
mert te is látod őt magadon át.

A férfi képes hallgatni a csendet,
és hordozni a legbelső magányt,
és meglátni a profánt és a szentet
a tiszta s torz tükörben egyaránt.

A férfi...? Ez csak szó. Csak puszta ketrec.
A férfi: ember. Más törvénye nincs.
Akkor kimondom, itt nincs már több kecmec,
hogy nem a pénisz teszi. A gerinc.

2016. december 6., kedd

Mario Benedetti: Despabílate amor

Bonjour buon giorno guten morgen,
despabílate amor y toma nota,
sólo en el tercer mundo
mueren cuarenta mil niños por día,
en el plácido cielo despejado
flotan los bombarderos y los buitres,
cuatro millones tienen sida
la codicia depila la amazonia.

buenos días good morning despabílate,
en los ordenadores de la abuela onu
no caben más cadáveres de ruanda
los fundamentalistas degüellan a
predica el papa contra los condones,
havelange estrangula a maradona

bonjour monsieur le maire
forza italia buon giorno
guten morgen ernst junger
opus dei buenos días
good morning hiroshima,

despabílate amor
que el horror amanece.

Mario Benedetti: Wake Up Love

Bonjour buon giorno guten morgen
wake up love and take note
in the third world alone
forty thousand children die each day
in the calm cloudless sky
bombers and buzzards are floating
four million people have AIDS
greed is stripping the amazon basin bald

buenos dias good morning better wake up now
on the computers of grandma UN
there's no room for all the corpses from rwanda
fundamentalists are slitting the throats of foreigners
the pope is preaching against condoms
havelange has the squeeze on maradona

bonjour monsieur la maire
forza italia buon giorno
guten morgen ernst junger
opus dei buenos días
good morning hiroshima

come on wake up love
horror's back with the dawn

--translated by Louise B. Popkin

2016. december 5., hétfő

Nikki Giovanni: Seduction

One day
you gonna walk in this house
and i'm gonna have a long African
you'll sit down and say "The Black..."
and i'm gonna take one arm out
then you-not noticing me at all- will say "What about
this brother..."
and i'm going to be slipping it over my head
and you'll rap on about "The revolution..."
while i rest your hand against my stomach
you'll go on-as you always do- saying
"I just can't dig..."
while i'm moving your hand up and down
and i'll be taking your dashiki off
then you'll say "What we really need..."
and taking your shorts off
the you'll notice
your state of undress
and knowing you you'll just say
isn't this counterrevolutionary...?"

2016. december 3., szombat

Kemény Lili: Magasfeszültség

Van lágy téli szomorúság,
az hideg és szép és nincs oka,
és van sokkal szebb szomorúság is,
olyan, mint a hajamba gabalyodott varjú:
én magam vagyok a kalitkája.

régen csak egyszer-kétszer láttam messziről
de most már a fogkeféjét is nálam tartja

Mintha az a perc válna végtelenné,
amíg tíz túrakenu teljes csöndben
átsiklik a nagyfeszültségű távvezeték
alatt, ahol a folyó is megnémul,
és csak a drót ideges remegését hallani

ez a feszültség: ezer fekete madár
szárnysurrogása a drótban

Akkor réges-rég, még kisfiú voltál,
leestél a fáról miattam. Ott szorongattad
a kezedben a csupasz varjúfiókát,
akit aztán a hajamban neveltem
beteg öreg madárrá.

2016. december 2., péntek

Charles Bukowski: sex

I am driving down Wilton Avenue
when this girl of about 15
dressed in tight blue jeans
that grip her behind like two hands
steps out in front of my car
I stop to let her cross the street
and as I watch her contours waving
she looks directly through my windshield
at me
with purple eyes
and then blows
out of her mouth
the largest pink globe of
bubble gum
I have ever seen
while I am listening to Beethoven
on the car radio.
she enteres a small grocery store
and is gone
and I am left with

2016. december 1., csütörtök

Kim Addonizio: Virgin spring

It’s a terrible scene, the two men talking to the girl who foolishly lets
them lead her away
from the road she’s taking to church, the men raping and killing her,
the young boy with them
watching, then left for a while with her body. But the film’s next scene
is more terrible
in some ways, the men and boy arriving at the house where the girl’s
parents live, but not
knowing, and the parents not knowing either, offering a meal, all of
them sitting together, breaking
bread at a long table—Is that the most awful, or is it when one man
tries to sell the mother
her murdered daughter’s clothes? — and she takes them, pretending to
consider. Though how
could she pretend at that moment, how control herself? Yet she does;
she goes outside,
locking them in the barn, and runs to her husband, to whom the task
of killing them falls.
So it goes on — rape, betrayal, murder, not even the boy is spared. And
what about the father,
swearing to build a church on the spot his daughter was killed, and the
miracle of water
gushing forth from the ground when they lift her body — Is that
enough, is there some sort
of balance now, good following evil, revenge annulled, the family
cleansed? What about
the other, dark-haired sister, the pregnant one, who had been a few yards
behind on the road
to church that morning, who had followed the men and watched from
a safe distance
while they erased the girl, her prettiness, her spoiled ways, her stupid
innocence —
I don’t know what to make of the sister. She’s the one who knows the
world is brutal
and goes on, scattering seed for the hogs, the one who says nothing,
the one who survives.