Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from 2014

The story of a fish

Once upon a time there was a fish who wished to live out of the sea. It admired the birds flying in the skies and dreamt. "One should accept what is possible" said the other fish. Still, it dreamt, with its big fish eyes. It spent the days observing the interesting forms of those other creatures to whom it had been offered the greatest prize, the skies.

One day, the sun was shining on the water, in thousands of little silver pieces and the fish, almost on the surface, longing for what it did not have, saw one of the creatures cross its limits, diving in high speed and returning fast into the blue sky. "Oh! how unfair!" Why could that creature have so much? Why would I have so little? No, it would no longer conform with that, it would no more accept such limitations. 

It thought the whole night, with its fish brain and, in the new morning, it swam to the pier. It used all its strength and leaped. For one second, it contemplated the sky without the distortion of its aq…

O nó

O nó
do sapato da garganta
O aperto  da gravata das correntes do peito
O gosto amargo  Sobe Desce  Chega à boca
A multidão O riso O choro  Só
O nó Até o retorno ao pó

A história de um peixe

Era uma vez um peixe que desejava viver fora do mar. Admirava os pássaros que voavam no céu e sonhava. "É preciso se conformar com o possível", diziam  os outros peixes. Mesmo assim, ele sonhava, com seus grandes olhos de peixe. Passava os dias a observar as interessantes formas daquelas outras criaturas a quem havia sido oferecido o maior prêmio, os céus. 
Um dia, o sol brilhava na água, em mil pedacinhos prateados, e ele,  quase na superfície, desejando o que não tinha, viu uma das criaturas atravessar o seu limite, mergulhando com velocidade e retornando ao azul do céu, com rapidez. "Ah, quão injusto!" Por que podia aquele ser ter tanto? E ele tão pouco? Não, não mais se conformaria, não mais aceitaria tamanha limitação. 
Pensou a noite toda, com seu cérebro de peixe, e na nova manhã, nadou até o pier. Usou de todas as suas forças e saltou.  Por um segundo contemplou o céu sem a distorção do meio aquoso: "Realmente belo!" E debateu-se, arfou, sufocou,…

Do

You don't have to read me
But if you love me
Do

To read me
is to know me
To face me
To look into my eyes
To read me
is to regard me
to contemplate
me

You don't have to read me
But if you love me
Do

Half

Not very hopeful
Not very young  Not gleaming Not contemplating future brightness
Half the path walked Useless beating around the bush Much audacity  Frustration
Insignificance of ideas Nonrealization of dreams  Mediocrity of words And feelings
The impertinent permanence of the moving world Oceans Masses of water separating masses of land And people The efemerity of people
Waves revolving sand
Leaves swaying in the wind
Bright days
Dark nights Fallen stars All that remains Once you're gone

There she was

She was there in the morning I saw her on my way Surrounded by a vastitude of green, there she was A single closed bud "How brave of her to come out all alone" were my thoughts as I walked
Afternoon, Once again I passed by There she was One might think she'd feel lonely But alone, she bloomed And in bloom she remained
At the end of the day,  I saw her one more time Sitting there in the greenery, In no less than it was planned,  In no less than she deserved,  In the magnificent splendor of a bud that, alone, decided to bloom.





Cecília Meireles

Hoje é dia do nascimento de Cecília Meireles, uma de nossas grandes poetas brasileiras. Então, em sua homenagem, vai aí um poema dela que me toca e a minha humilde tradução para o inglês para que outros o conheçam. / Today is the date of the birth of one of Brazil's great poets, Cecília Meireles. So, in her honor I share one of her poems that touch me and my humble translation of it to English so that others get to know it.

Retrato
      Cecília Meireles

Eu não tinha este rosto de hoje,
assim calmo, assim triste, assim magro,
nem estes olhos tão vazios,
nem o lábio amargo.

Eu não tinha estas mãos sem força,
tão paradas e frias e mortas;
eu não tinha este coração
que nem se mostra.

Eu não dei por esta mudança,
tão simples, tão certa, tão fácil:
- Em que espelho ficou perdida
a minha face?

Portrait
       Cecília Meireles
       Translated by Lorena S. Santos

I did not have this face of today,
So calm, so sad, so thin,
Neither had I such empty eyes,
Such bitter lips.

I did not have…

The voice

I heard your voice.  It called my name. I heard it! 
Nor here, nor there,  Neither me, nor the voice. I heard it! 
Voice of all answers.  To whom all questions are directed.  I heard the voice! 
Stay, I asked!  Say more, I begged!  Silence... silence... Gone.  The voice that returns no more

A voz

Ouvi sua voz.
Chamou meu nome. Ouvi! 
Nem aqui, nem ali, Nem eu, nem a voz. Ouvi! 
Voz de todas as respostas,  Para onde rumam todas as perguntas.  Ouvi a voz! 
Fique, pedi!  Fale mais, implorei!  Silêncio... silêncio... Foi-se. A voz que não volta mais.

When a murderer lives inside your head

Schopenhauer says to live is to climb a mountain and when you see what is waiting for you on the other side of the mountain too early in life, you can never climb it the same way. I saw what was on the other side and decided I was simply not climbing that mountain anymore, unless pushed the way up. You wouldn’t realize that just by looking at me then. You wouldn’t see that I had quit. I would wake up, take showers, eat (actually there would be a lot of eating), go to work, do whatever obligation I was supposed to. I would even go out with friends or family.
But if you looked really closer, you would realize I was only automatically responding to demands, except for the food. Food became my only source of pleasure. How was all the rest performed? At work, if there were tasks and deadlines, I’d do them, using no more than the basic skills required.As to my social life, it rested on the plans of others. They would say when and where to go. They would pick me up and bring me home. I wou…

Gris

Parcos sorrisos
Pequenos gestos  dão preguiça Os menores esforços  exasperam
A luminosidade  amarela-azul  Cega Atordoa Eu sigo  Gris

You

You,
Who relish your false beliefs
Hiding behind the crucifix Disguised in the compassion towards human kind, 
You,  Who look at others
With starving eyes And push them away  When they draw near
You, Who linger on frustration, Remaining static, 
No ambition, no movement Know you're cursed,  Know you're doomed
You will never find such passion, Never exert the power 
You so strongly hold on to In cowardness and weakness 
You shall drown
Shrink  So small, 
so diminute Until you mean Close to nothing  Until you are just a grain,  A speckle, an insignificant fragment
of the profound love you once retained

Pra ser feliz

O que fazer pra ser feliz? Pular de bota em água de poça? Dançar na rua cantando uma canção? Assistir filme, comer pipoca? Esquecer da solidão tomando vinho? Comendo macarrão?
O que fazer pra ser feliz? Jogar tudo para o alto e começar de novo? Passar a vida comendo arroz com ovo? Insistir no mesmo, repetir os gestos, os ritos, os pensamentos? E será que isso dá algum alento?
O que fazer pra ser feliz? Fingir que é bom, altruísta, generoso? Convence o espelho? Não fica mesmo nem vermelho?
O que fazer pra ser feliz? Ganhar dinheiro? Comprar mansão, iate, carro importado? E faz o que, depois que compra? Fica feliz? Quanto dura ser feliz?
O que fazer para ser feliz? Encontrar o par? Junto ficar? Aguentar o bom e o ruim? O bom é fácil. O ruim.? É de lascar!
O que fazer pra ser feliz? Seguir paixões? Uma por uma? Viver todas conforme o vento? Seguir a correnteza?
Mas e o ruim? Porque ele vem. Paixão não cuida Paixão consome Isso faz você feliz?
E tem feliz?…

When I had faith

When I had faith I contemplated the stars with dreamy eyes.
I waited weeks for a letter that would save my life or kill me instantly. 
I believed in love songs and wedding gowns. 
I went to the theater and watched movies as messages sent from the Gods. 

When I had faith I believed pregnancies bore no pain. 
I believed in doctors and medicine. I believed babies never died and mothers were always alive. 
I believed in Justice, not men's justice, but God's. 
The first, I truly never believed. 
I believed good poetry could come out of sunshine, flowers and blue skies. 
I believed you always knew why and when you lied. 
I believed in moonlight. 
I believed in rhyme, when I had faith. 
Now, most of it is ever gone. 
Most of it is lost in time. 
But the rhyme, the stars, the love songs, the Sun, the sky. 
Well, perhaps, just perhaps, I still might.

Little message from the presumptuous soul

Because by looking  at you I made you more beautiful.
You did not know who you were before you saw me. 
The light you shine now emanates from the love I once felt for you, 
a star long dead gleam traveling through the universe. 
You might walk around without me, 
But I'm there. 

In the proud stroll, in the intense stare, 
In the careless movement of head and hands, 
In the shaping of a smile, 
In the sound of  laughter and in passionate cries, 
I'm there. 
You might forget, so I'm telling you! 
Beware! 
I am there! 





Mãos dadas

Mãos dadas
Luz de fim de tarde
Ressaca de clube
de jogos
de risos

Corpos preguiçosos
queimados de sol
cheirando a banho tomado
Caminham
nas ruas
sem rumo

A música
Fácil
A música
Demais
Adolescer
Indolecer

O desejo
O beijo
A língua
O arrepio
Corpos
Jovens corpos

O calor
A casquinha
O sorvete
O prazer
A juventude
O crescer

E as mãos?
Unidas
As mãos
Que são
Mãos
Dadas



The wound

Thoughts hurt
Writing cuts the skin deep Let it bleed  Run through the paper Drip its drops of dos and don'ts
A scar stays
Too new Too recent Too soon 
A sharp movement will burst the wound Fill the world  With words of sorrow Flood the world With cries of pain


Eyes

Once
Eyes embraced When feeble were words Eyes were deep
A turbulent ocean  Sucked me deep  Eyes that caressed Eyes that undressed

...

Shy eyes
Furtive looks Yet, deep intimacy Stay on  Shy eyes Stay on

...

Eyes
Wide open
Capturing movement
Seeing silence and sound
Measuring
immeasurable danger
in the blink of an eye

O Oceano

Ficou lá, em pé, nas pedras, contemplando o oceano. Esse oceano que tocou tantas praias, onde tantos sonhos foram sonhados, em tantas diferentes línguas. Esse oceano ao qual se sentiu tão ligado, seu parceiro de outras vidas, tão familiar, tão misterioso. Para ele, desconhecido.
Lá permaneceu, parado, olhando fixamente, observando as rítmicas idas e vindas. Sentia-se atraído por sua intensidade, pelo movimento das ondas. Tentava entender o porquê. Ouvia atentamente seus sons.
Imaginava o prazer de sentir-se coberto por suas águas, sentindo sua temperatura, subermergindo em sua profundidade, deixando seu corpo ser carregado pelas correntes. Podia adivinhar as correntes, profundas correntes.
Nadadores enfrentavam tais correntes. Ele já vira. Mergulhando das pedras, eles se jogavam. Com suas primeiras braçadas furiosas, confrontavam as marés, domavam as correntes. Voltavam exaustos, sem fôlego e extasiados. Mas ele não era nadador. Vinha contemplando esse oceano há alguns anos. Ouvia seu…

The Ocean

He stood there, on the rocks, contemplating the ocean. This ocean that had touched so many shores, where so many dreams were dreamt, in so many different languages. This ocean to which he felt so connected, his partner from other lives,  so familiar, yet mysterious. To him, unknown. 
He remained there, standing, staring, observing the rythmic comings and goings. He was drawn to it by its intensity, the movement of the waves. He tried to understand why. He listened attentively to its sounds.
He imagined the pleasure of being covered by its water, feeling its temperature, submerging in its depth, allowing his body to be carried by its currents. He could guess there were currents, deep currents.
Swimmers faced such currents. He had seen them. Diving from the rocks, they took the leap.  With their furious first strokes, they confronted the tides, tamed the currents. They came back exhausted, breathless and exhilarating. But he was no swimmer. He had been contemplating this ocean for quite a …

Dreams that never are

Oh, she insisted, begged, pleaded
Yet, no interest, no reply After, no explanation needed No justification could apply
It was all there in the cold stare In the blank expression of the face No other moment can compare To when alone you fall in space
She closed her eyes and heart and soul She began falling Ever slow
And I can hear her, though afar Amidst life and its demands

Take it, my friend

You should take it, my friendYour chance given by the universe  Go back to the beginning You had no past, you were free
You should take it, my friend Though weary eyes look at me  While fine lines crawl up your face And silver rays shine through your hair
Just return to that place Oh, go back to that time Peaceful you'd fall into slumber  Resting in the arms of your lover
And the dreams you had were a highway of stars Where you both could run free at the speed of the sound


Morning of May

Life goes on Luminous Blue Morning of May 
The Sun Its Warmth A Cold Light Breeze
Smiles  Simpathy And the walk ...
Inside,  Dark night The absence,  The fear
Inside,  A black hole Impossible Fulfilling
Inside, The tightening In the chest, The emptiness
Out,  Blue, The morning of May

Manhã de maio

A vida segue LuminosaManhã de maio  Azul
Sol  Quente Leve brisa  Fria 
Sorrisos  Simpatia E o caminhar...
Dentro,  Noite escura A falta,  O medo
Dentro,  Buraco negro Impossível  Preenchimento
Dentro, O aperto  No peito, O vazio
Fora,  A manhã, De maio, Azul

The World that lives in me

The world lives in me
With all its colors and scents
All its flavours

It multiplies with
every new sight,
concept,
insight,
feeling,
word

Every time I love or cry,
Breath in and out
It expands
It amplifies
This world
The world that lives in me


Piri

De Piri
Eu gosto Do quente do sol Do frio das águas Das Pedras Dos Rios Das almas
De Piri Eu gosto Calçadas Telhados Sobrados  Cerrados
Doce Piri Gosto d'ocê

Nothing

There is nothing to sayThat has not been said
There is nothing to feel
That has not been deeply
doubly, overtly felt

Spaces can't be crossed
Time can't be filled
And even the lies,
the customary lies that make all better,
cannot be told anymore.

Chinese man

She got up and went to get a cup of coffee. “Damned headache!” Acute and deep, precise, the day ruined. --As if a long, fine, pointy needle forced itself through my cranium, you know? A Chinese man with long mustache holding one point of the needle, manipulating it, pushing it very slowly. --Why Chinese? Seriously, she could not believe it! A headache from Hell, dripping sweat after the coffee and that was the question? --Why not? Is there a law against the Chinese? -I was just asking! --It’s my pain, isn’t it? If it’s Chinese, Japanese, Arabic, what is the difference? --Forget it!    She regretted the rude reply, but did not apologize! Apologizing would require time, explanations, facing the Chinese man, pulling him by the mustache, immobilizing him. She went into the room, closed the curtains, and laid down. She heard the door being slammed. “He is gone!” She thought of how much that answer was going to cost her in accusations of rudeness, selfishness, lack of caring. She knew it would be…