Thursday, 7 January 2010

umberto saba


It’s as if for a man battered by the wind,
blinded by snow - all around him an arctic
inferno pummels the city-
a door opens along a wall.

He goes in. He finds again a living kindness,
the sweetness of a warm corner. A forgotten
name places a kiss on
cheerful faces that he has not seen
except obscurely in menacing dreams.
He returns
to the street, and the street, too, is not the same.
Fine weather has come back, busy hands
break up the ice, the blue reappears
in the sky and in his heart. And he thinks
that every extreme of evil foretells a good.

trans george hochfield and leonard nathan


Roxana said...

oh, how tender...
i feel warmer already.

and i have already got the pictures for the first part, i only need a second series for the second part :-)

swiss said...

it's a good cold weather poem!

James Owens said...

Thank you for this, Swiss. Just the right note of hopefulness, here in the depth of darkest winter....

swiss said...

thanks james. i think that poems that manage to do this while avoiding the trap of mawkishness are few and far between. i just got lucky and came upon it recently. serendipity!