I translate poems,
when I want to be different than this other me,
who writes them.
When I wish I was born in a large city
before, during or after a breakthrough,
when I wish I lived in America in the 40’s,
at the times of the Shah in Iran,
on the left side of the Berlin wall,
wish I was the granddaughter a Jew who ran to Canada,
a grandson bearing the name of an ancestor
coming back from his Siberian exile,
when I want to be black, yellow, red, striped,
when with the mouth of another person
I want to speak out foreign words
as easily as in English,
as noisily as in Polish,
as seamlessly as in Persian.
I translate the pain of the others
as used feelings,
with a sure hand and heartless,
as pain only interests me in theory,
as I wanted to be a doctor.
when I can’t get along with this other me who writes.
Translated by Paweł Sakowski