Nothing exists that hasn’t had a beginning.
Even in the distance, a clear lit speck,
in territories stripped from all limits, on
sands that flow from unknown seas,
we only contemplate the extent of what we perceived.
If fields in livonia lead to fields in masuria,
if tiles are smoothed in tepid bath waters,
and further on graveyard follows graveyard, and
in their midst, in the roughness of silesia, the birch wood stands;
if the sun is the flame of the olive oil crumbling the bread
or the chipped lightening on the walls of helsingør;
if the death plot is everywhere the same,
be it in leuk’s blind skull or in the tallinn concertina,
in the meek pine cones, on the bare ended roads,
it is because we modulate in one place what has seeped from another.
Even unwillingly, or perhaps it’s the shadows on the move,
even in what divides our steps on the corn fields,
in a dispirited town, in the emptiness of erasure,
we weave no more than the line that joins the curve
whose fine foliage comes to be buried under our feet.
Even if laboriously minutia we detach the places,
detailing their diversions and extremes,
the similarity between what they are and what we thought they were;
even throughout regions intersected by extensive trains,
where night will fall in scales of lavender,
we’ll follow the same story, the dragging of the same ground,
the slope under the same wind and the same successive twilight,
the same darkened hollow life of every single place.
In that which repeatedly sucks us in,
as we yearn for whatever comes to pass further in the next cove
smoothing with our hands the oak trees on whose bark we inscribe,
like others before us, our sinuous names, our loves,
we constantly return to the point where all is repeated and begun,
of which we grasp a mere minute — an instant,
the blade mediating between this year and the next.
Translation: Ana Hudson