Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The City Of Violinmakers

Henrik Nordbrandt, 1945, Danish Poet. This translation by John Irons.

"Every time that you return
I could kill you for it –
out of envy at the view
I never gained a glimpse of, the river
that wound its way through the city and out
into lush countryside
unless it was a stream of blue horses
the snow of the mountains and the local
language, the inside jokes
they made about their kings.
‘The city of violin makers’ I have often
christened the place where I search
for your soul’s preferred haunt
your melancholy’s woodland floor, and the special
tint in the light across your cheek
the one that drives me mad in late-winter
or in other words: I know nothing of death
but I ascribe such powerlessness to the dead
such an undirected yearning
that no picture can be made
despite the frame that is always present:
Throughout the night downriver
we nevertheless lay awake on deck
listening to the string music
borne out to us from invisible banks."

He reminds me of Neruda.

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