TRANSLATION CAFÉ, Nr. 19/November 15, 2007 |Translations from: Elaine Feinstein: Poems for Arnold, Hands , by Gabriela Burcea

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We first recognised each other as if we were siblings,
and when we held hands your touch
made me stupidly happy.

Hold my hand, you said in the hospital

You had big hands, strong hands, gentle
as those of a Mediterranean father
caressing the head of a child.

Hold my hand , you said. I feel
I won’t die while you are here.

You took my hand on our first aeroplane
and in opera houses, or watching
a video you wanted me to share.

Hold my hand, you said. I’ll fall asleep
and won’t even know you’re not there.  

Prima data ne-am stiut ca fratii,
si cand ne-am tinut de mana, atingerea ta
m-a facut fericita si prostuta.

Tine-ma de mana, mi-ai spus la spital.

Aveai maini mari, maini puternice, blande
ca acelea ale unui tata mediteranean
care mangaie crestetul unui copil.

Tine-ma de mana, mi-ai spus. Simt
ca nu voi muri atata timp cat esti aici.

M-ai tinut de mana prima data cand am mers cu avionul
si la opera, si cand ne-am uitat
la caseta video pe care ai vrut sa o impart cu tine.

Tine-ma de mana, mi-ai spus. Voi adormi
si nici nu voi sti ca nu esti aici.
 Gabriela Burcea

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