TRANSLATION CAFÉ, Nr. 19/November 15, 2007 |Translations from: Elaine Feinstein: Poems for Arnold, Stuff, by George Cojocaru

Publicat deIoana Ioana

Stuff

Here we came in hot July, with the treasures
of a whole life together shambled in boxes
to be unwrapped and set out in new places:
the ebon carving of Rama’s wife, Sita,
each hair precisely cut, the puppets
from Prague, heavy art deco goblets,
a Sung fan discovered in South East Asia,
a cherry-wood flute player. You were

always eager to explore, and equally pleased
to investigate auction rooms or an Oxfam shop.
In a hardware store, you discovered elegance in
a simple tool for shaving slivers of cheese.
Even caches of paper clips and staplers
hold your presence, and the screws,
and Aruldite stored under the stairs

you often used to mend the backs of chairs.
Not to speak of the imac, in which your spirit
still continues: nets of thought intensely lived.
And most of all , in walnut drawers beneath
the table by our bed where once you kept
sleeping pills and indigestion tablets :
your hearing aid, your spectacles, your teeth.    
Materie

Iata-ne in iulie cel fierbinte, cu ale noastre
comori de-o viata inghesuite in cutii
ce vor fi scoase si expuse in locuri noi:
Portretul Sitei, sotia lui Rama, sculptat in abanos,
Cu fiecare suvita taiata cu precizie, papusile
din Praga, pocaluri decorative grele,
un evantai Sung descoperit in Asia de Sud-Est,
un flaut din lemn de cires.

Mereu ai fost dornic sa explorezi, si, in acelasi timp,
multumit daca te aflai intr-o casa de licitatie sau
intr-un magazin Oxfam.
Intr-o pravalie de obiecte de uz casnic ai descoperit eleganta
unei unelte banale de taiat felii de branza.
Pana si depozitele de agrafe si capsatoare musteau de prezenta ta,
sau surubelnitele si adezivul inmagazinate sub scari si pe care ades

le-ai folosit sa repari spatarele scaunelor.
Ca sa nu mai zic de calculatorul iMac, in care spiritul tau
inca salasluieste: retele de ganduri intens traite.
Si, mai presus de toate, sertarele din lemn de nuc
de sub masa de langa pat, unde iti tineai somniferele
si pastilele pentru indigestie:
proteza auditiva, ochelarii, dintii tai.
 George Cojocaru

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