The depths of the season
Here stood a wall, now the wind is blowing.
Listen. Silence so deep that you can hear it
bouncing off your ear. In your ears a bakelite
telephone rings, it’s them all right.
Once I used to live there, my buddies
used to live there, afterwards
they went away, they studied foreign tongues,
including ones that no one understands. Ones
you catch onto later, but there’s no one to
chat to. In the courtyard the trash bins
and dry flowerbeds put on airs. In our
window there’s a void. In the courtyard the echo
of a song rebounds from deep inside a cellar.
In our courtyard, when the sun is shining,
there stands a machine for making death.
The picture’s peeling, starting to flake. It’s good
to sweep it aside with the ashes. We each have the sort of Pompeii
we’ve made for ourselves to lie in.
© translated by Antonia Lloyd-Jones