Thursday, 30 June 2011

how i got the best hitch ever

so, finally it's coast to coast time. we start off in corran, or at least we do when we get there, having had a fine old night previously in a wee b&b some miles down the coast. naturally it's raining, it's the west coast. in scotland. in summer. but not just raining, no, that would be simple. this is more like some godawful torrent, a deluge.

no matter, i'm up for it, the bike's ready and so am i. but first a wee stop in glenelg to see the brochs neither of which t has ever seen but which i've been at on and off for the last twenty years, nothing at all really compared to the amount of time they've been here

it's all sorts of lovely in the pouring rain. i do notice that the waterfall down the glen is more in spate than i've ever seen it. it doesn't register. it should.

and off to corran, along a wee road i've never been and again scenery tha somehow suits the conditions - misty islands, inlets, an otter runs across the road until there's just me and my bike and it's time to go. t is working so she's away down the road. this isn't our normal routine and neither of us like it. like a disturbance in the force....

the good times, along with the 'trail' last all of a couple of hundred metres, then i'm into a rutted wood, knee depp in water where the river's flooded. a veritable tourette's is launched. i put that down to the towniness coming out of me and press on. the track becomes a landrover track and then suddenly it seems someone has built a wall. except it isn;t a wall but the track so steep it looks like a wall. okay then....

and then i reach the first burn. or should i say torrent. i gingerly make my way over, dump my pack and then back for the bike.this routine is about to become depressingly common. normally it would just be wet and a pain but as i'm on my own it has that element of stupidity and danger. and of course t's away down the road by this point so it's not like there's a turning back.

on and on i go, all the time the sound of water in my ears. and lots of lovely wee dippers zipping about, more than i've ever seen in one place. i get up to the lochans and the water is battering down off the dam like something demented. i'm glad i don;t have to cross that i think.

the instructions in the route guide are clear. follow the pylons. nothing about a river crossing. except the pylons cross the river. maybe normally you wouldn't get your feet wet. only now it's waist deep and fairly flying down the glen. again the tourette's and casting up and down the river until i finally find an island and manage to get across. i know i have two significant river crossings the following day and already i'm thinking there's no chance i'm risking that.

but anyway, onwards and upwards and a word about tyre choice. normally i'd be on some stubbly mtb tyre. but, as there's a bit of road to come, i've chosen some semi slicks. when you're cycling up a stream filled with slidey granite stones this isn't a good idea. at least i've got a mudguard. then i remember i haven't got any spare brake pads. right around this time i crash.

and again a tourettesian tirade as i've managed to land right on my left knee. what is the deal with this day. but i suck it up. no signal, no easy out so that's all there is to it. my bars are a wee bit bent so i pick the bike up, fix that and then go to roll off. except the bike won't move, the rear wheel jammed up against the frame. i go to get the quick release and then remember, it's rohloff, i don;t have a quick release. and then i see the securing bolt has slipped off the drop out. and right then i realise that despite having a tool to do every job on a regular bike i don't have a 14mm spanner for this bolt. this time i proper lose it.

but just for a second because really, what's the use. i contemplate leaving the bike but it's a long, long way to the nearest road and i won;t get a signal until i reach the end of it by which time t will be long gone. only one thing for it - i shoulder the bike and hike it out. it's a killer. i'm no lover of walking (see the ben nevis post) so i know this is going to take it out of me. and it does. but i make it.

i see a house. i knock the door. eventually a person appears, looks at me, then goes into another room, completely ignoring me. i hope, i say, you have a heart attack and carry my bike down to the next house where, even if i'm not greeted with the 'highland hospitality' (or maybe i am) at least they have a spanner. no cup of tea or other aid which, in their position i surely would've offered but hey ho, my bike's fixed and off i go. straight into the climb.

it's 15% up glenelg and only a little less into loch hourn. after the walk my legs feel cooked. and not in a good way. i check the bike. the tyres should be well pumped up. can it be, really, can it be that the rear is losing air? i hate cycling my mtb on the road but i really hate it when the presures are down in tyres, twice the effort for half the distance. but worrying about it isn;t going to get me where i want to go. and off up the hill.

and then the wind starts. there's a big low blowing in from the west so obviously for me far from being at my back it's hitting me in the face. i'm too done to care. do your worst i say, i can take it, getting my head down and working out the shortest route to the hostel. it's while i'm doing this i cycle through a puddle. innocuous you might think but enough to kick the chain off and into the bottom bracket. which is where it stays.

i spend around half an hour trying to fix it but it won't release and by this time i realise how cold i'm getting. i get my warm gear out. I'm going to have to walk it out i think, a good twenty miles in cycling shoes. great. but nevertheless it is what it is. i get my long fingered gloves on. a brief ray of sunshine breaks through. thanks for that, i smile. it's taken me three hours to go some fifteen miles

and i've taken all of three steps when i hear a car. i stick my thumb out. the car pulls over. have you broken down asks the german girl inside. yes i have i say. this is not a problem, she says, you can put the bike on my bike rack. brilliant i say. where are you going she asks. for augustus i say. but this is excellent she says, i am going to fort augustus. were it not inappropriate i could have kissed her there and then and told her of my belief in a higher power. the best hitch i have ever had.

i'n very cold by the time i get to the hostel but they have one of those skin scorching showers that hammers the heat right into your bones and i emerge refreshed and hungry. legs hurt but hey, t is coming up to get me, way above the call of duty in my opinion, so i can get a new bike and get going again the following day.

which sees me zipping around the xc friendly trails of aviemore. i'm staying at the cairngorm lodge where they feed me like a king. it's great. well almost great if it wasn't for the fact i'm sharing with the king of snorers. but i'm woken early enough to see the bats going to roost and get out to the loch for a day that starts like this

of course i think it'll be okay if i put in a 100k day off road after less than three hours sleep. that sounds like a fine idea. and if the weather holds i'll get off in the boat. first off i do an extended round the back of loch garten and then back in via ryvoan bothy

then the plan is glen einich and finish on the road bike up to the ski station which is around about where it all went wrong. first i got a twinge in one of the hamstring tendons behind my left knee and then all of a sudden it felt like someone had punched me in the right buttock. punched me and then set it on fire. and all of a sudden my trip was down.

in fact not only was my trip done but so was i. comedy scenes at my physio today as i creak onto the couch. i've got a race next week i say. hmm she says and wires into me with some sort of vibrating club thing which she later lets me take away. spend the rest of the day in a haze of ibuprofen, paracetamol and codeine with an ice pack intermittently stuck to my bum. it's not an endearing sight.

so it wasn't a coast to coast. i didn't even do the routes i wanted. but what a journey! sometimes the end point is not the one i thought it was and then it becomes all about how i got there. and that first day? that's an epic that will only get better with the telling!

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

graham obree

so t finally gets away to the land of her forbears for a weekend of heavy duty making. it all goes well, even if she sees precious little of the country and she barely sleeps in between working and excited phone calls to me. the best birthday present i shall get her? i'm going to be hard pushed to top it. certainly the pair of us will have to go back ireland at some point so that we can see it together.

anyway on her way back she texts me from the ferry. what's your opinion on graham obree, she asks? time trial, i say, francesco moser, the hour, bother with the cycling authorities, difficult personal life, read his book, haven't seen the film, why do you ask?

because i've just been having a blether with him this last half hour she says. so it turns out she'd heard his name while she was in the queue and, on the off chance, gone up to him, confirmed who he was and asked if he didn't have any copies of his book. sold out he'd said, but he did have copies of the dvd. so off down the ship they go where they get to his bike and obree expounds, seeing as t had been telling him about my cycling 'triumphs' on why a trailer is better than panniers for touring.

then, once the dvd has been exchanged he asks t, and what about you. so t tells him she's been away on the felting course and what's she's doing with all that. and obree's really into it. you need to chase your dream he says to t, which at that point, is exactly what she wants and needs to hear. that graham obree she says, what a great guy. oh yes, she says, and i told him if he was ever passing and needed a place to stay. brilliant, i say, so i can get my legs rode off by graham obree. i think i'll stick to the felt chat.

gerald manley hopkins


This darksome burn, horseback brown,
His rollrock highroad roaring down,
In coop and in comb the fleece of his foam
Flutes and low to the lake falls home.

A windpuff-bonnet of fawn-froth
Turns and twindles over the broth
Of a pool so pitchblack, fell frowning,
It rounds and rounds Despair to drowning.

Degged with dew, dappled with dew
Are the groins of the braes that the brook treads through,
Wiry heathpacks, flitches of fern,
And the beadbonny ash that sits over the burn.

What would the world be, once bereft
Of wet and wildness? Let them be left,
O let them be left, wildness and wet;
Long live the weeds and the wilderness yet.

Sunday, 26 June 2011

heinrich heine

Looking Back

I have smelled all the perceptible smells
In this world’s kitchen.
All things enjoyable
I have enjoyed if ever man did. I have
Drunk coffee, eaten cake, had a variety
Of fair females, have worn silk waistcoats,
Worn the most elegant tails, and have jingled
A shilling or two in my pocket. I have
Ridden on a high horse like Jonathan Swift.
I owned a house; I also owned a castle.
I reclined on the green fields of good fortune,
And the sun’s gold glance wished me good morning.
A laurel wreath moreover I wore; it subtly
Suffused my brain with dreams. I dreamed,
Dreamed of roses, and of eternal spring –
It was all so delicious as long as it lasted:
Dozing in twilight, bone idle, the pigeons,
Yes roast pigeons literally flew into my mouth,
And angels visited me, producing bottles of
Champagne from their pockets – these were the visions,
Soap bubbles which burst. The grass I now lie on
Is wet, I am crippled with rheumatism,
And my soul, my very soul is ashamed.
Oh, every joy and every pleasure I paid for
With heartache, sour, I was soaked in bitterness,
Eaten by bugs, by black care oppressed,
Driven to deceit, borrowing cash from
Affluent chaps and doddering harridans –
I believe I was even obliged to go begging.
I’m weary now of all this hither-and-thithering.
I want to sleep it all off in a good deep grave.
So then good-bye! Oh yes, up there good Christian brothers,
Naturally we shall see each other up there again.

trans by christopher middleton

Thursday, 23 June 2011

samuel hanagid

The Prison

The earth is a prison to man all his life.
Therefore I say this truth to the fool:
Though you rush about, the sky
Surrounds you on all sides. Try to get
Out, if you can.

trans by t. carmi

Sunday, 19 June 2011


Less pub than brothel, and you, the regulars

Less pub than brothel, and you, the regulars
The ninth pillar from Castor and Pollux
Do you think you are the only ones equipped with a penis,
That you are the only ones licensed for fucking
And that the rest who do it are merely goats?
Do you think, as you sit waiting in rows
A hundred or two hundred together, that I shall not dare
To do the whole lot of you, two hundred together?
Think again : I will draw scorpions
All over the walls of then place.
For my girl, who has escaped from my arms,
Who was loved as much, and more than any is loved,
For whom I have expended all my forces, She is there. You, the great and the good, all love her,
You the valueless, corrupt, adulterous all love her;
You above all Egnatius
Long-haired son of a rabbit-toothed Celtiberian
Only made good by your beard
Your teeth whitened by Spanish piss.

trans by c.h. sisson

Saturday, 18 June 2011


after what seems an age the anne sexton reading is finally coming to a close, in part because i've been wanting to make it last as long as possible (a waiting game that worked wonderfully with william maxwell) but also because there's only so long i can have anne sexton's voice in my head (a nice wee interview with anne stevenson re sexton here

however i've got loads out of the parallel reading of biography/letters/collected poetry. next up I would imagine will be elizabeth bishop, not least because I've already got her collected letters, poems and anne stevenson's book on her. all i need now is a biography and i'm off.

not that i'll be getting the kindle versions of any of these. my affair with the kindle definitely seems to be more off than on. for what i bought it for – a means of carrying a load of reading material when I''m away on the bike – it's great. true, it's a bit fragile and needs protection from bumps and water but beyond that it's just fine. except really it's not.

getting a cover for it worked really well for me in terms of using it but i was under no illusions that what I was really doing was making it feel more like an actual book. but i miss the feel of the pages, the smell of the paper, all the illustration, the binding, the font, the contrast of the ink on paper, the heft of it in my hands and most of all the simple act of turning the page (and all of that before the fact that the kindle versions are often more expensive and we have to pay vat on them!)

so, for a good wee while now, while i've grudgingly accepted it, overall it's been in the 'not really for me' category. until this week where for various reasons my mind's been turning back to moby dick. i wanted a big hefty copy i could annotate. i had some discussion with joanne and she recommended the folio edition which i duly got on ebay. what a lovely thing (for all the reasons above) and far too nice to write on even if the page size and the paper were just right. i thought then what i could do instead was read the folio edition, then annotate my vintage edition (not the best by virtue of cheap paper)

and then the kindle! finally i can make a set of notes that doesn't rely on me remembering what notes are where or peppering my book with post it notes until it looks like a hedgehog. a bit unwieldy, true, but now my close reading consists of the folio edition for reading, the kindle for making electronic notes and the vintage for marking up. with some nice coffee on the go and a quiet room what better way to spend a rainy scottish afternoon


or how I managed to miss marion's reading despite re-arranging work.

the signs were there on tuesday when i had a rare night off to get off with the tuesday boys. where is mr p i queried. he was at the boys school sports day, they told me, he was entering the dads' running race. running, i said, is he mad? if he wasn't then he is now, they told me, he's torn both his hamstrings. and then followed a long conversation about the need for stretching in cycling males of a certain age. that one sentence is about as interesting as i can make it.

the following day i got phoned up to see if i wanted to lend a bit of moral support to a three peaks challenge (up and down the three highest hills in the uk in 24hrs). sounds good i said so long as i've time to get on the bike before i go. i texted geo. guess what, I said, i'm going to climb ben nevis. but you hate walking came the reply, you've got dodgy knees, it's been fifteen years since we last did a hill and wasn't it you who whined like a little girl the last time i made you walk to the beach? are you mad?

but it sounded like a lark and was in aid of man cancer so i was not to be dissuaded. off to the ben we went where we found it, despite it being late afternoon, swarming with folk all doing the same as we were. great weather, no wind so off we went, and after a bit of initial foot discomfort i was able to push the pace a bit at the front.

but so many people. and so few of them from scotland. vast swathes of englishness coupled with japanese, chinese, spanish, italians and a rake of germans. it took until nearly the top until i was finally greeted with the glottal stops of my countrymen which was good in itself as one of the behaviors notably manifesting itself was the inability of many of the walkers to respond to a greeting with anything other than an 'are you the loony on the bus' look. there were also a fair number of folk who could reasonably be described as defying their years. they were all great (they all said hello) and every one of us said we'd be aiming to be as active at the same age.

and up the hill. we had one guy who was lagging a bit so i was back and forward a bit pacing him up but we still managed up the hill in just over two hours which was within their planned time and no-one was looking too burst. and then down the hill. only a couple of hundred metres downhill and i started to lag. going up had been fine, big steps, not unlike pedaling. downhill on the other hand uses a completely different set of muscles, muscles i never have any reason to use. i shortcutted down a couple of runners paths but even so everyone else got in well ahead of me – it took longer to descend than it took me to get to the top!

by friday morning i couldn't move. i curled up in a blanket and dozed, any thought of walking (walking!) to the train station far less through the centre of glasgow the last thing either I or my body wanted to do. the only silver lining is that t is in kilkenny so couldn't witness my attempts to get up and down the stairs. and that's before i went to work!

i'm not sad i don't do the hills any more. it was good when i did it but going up the ben, albeit at a busy time, reminded me of why i like the bike better. that said, with a decent team and some proper conditioning into my legs who knows?

*for those interested in that sort of thing we were up and down in 4:20. without the leg issue i reckon i could comfortably get that down to 3:30. the record - 1:25!!!!!

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

bertolt brecht

War Has Been Given a Bad Name

I am told that the best people have begun saying
How, from a moral point of view, the Second World War
Fell below the standard of the First. The Wehrmacht
Allegedly deplores the methods by which the SS effected
The extermination of certain peoples. The Ruhr industrialists
Are said to regret the bloody manhunts
Which filled their mines and factories with slave workers. The intellectuals
So I heard, condemn industry’s demand for slave workers
Likewise their unfair treatment. Even the bishops
Dissociate themselves from this way of waging war; in short the feeling
Prevails in every quarter that the Nazis did the Fatherland
A lamentably bad turn, and that war
While in itself natural and necessary, has, thanks to the
Unduly uninhibited and positively inhuman
Way in which it was conducted on this occasion, been
Discredited for some time to come.

trans by john willett

Saturday, 11 June 2011

ping hsin


I tear off the calendar,
What day is today?
It is a though a cloud,
Black as a crow,
Swept across my eyes.
I want to be a woman of peace and a philosopher.
I forbid myself to think of him.
But I can think only of him.
I am just the kind of person I am.
I am not a woman of peace.
I am not qualified to be a philosopher.
I only know,
If a man loves me I love him;
If he dislikes me I dislike him.
A piece of land small as a leaf
Will be my home. I can never forget him.

trans unknown

Thursday, 9 June 2011

vintage sea

it's a rare pleasure, engendered i suppose primarily by the internet, but at the same time showing up its many shortcomings as the postie man pushes a brown parcel packet thru the door just as i wake up and all at once i have a sense of brown paper, the matt drag of it on my fingers, the careful picking up of the knife to slice thru sellotape. ah, i think, so that's what her writing looks like. and all at once the moment is more than itself, a summation of all those others, small contacts, things read, conversations had.

these are the things i like in poetryland and i'm lucky enough to have had a few of them, when those blogged contacts somehow transform themselves into the possession of something made. which is more than a book or a pamphlet but a crafted thing, something new in the world, like a person you almost know but without the day to day blurring of memory.

and this again is what receiving marion's vintage sea is like. and almost moreso. i've met marion of few times now, i'd hazard a guess that i'd recognise in a busy street, but these poems i know them. so i'm happy to not be watching the dauphine-libere, putting the tv off and welcoming these upon my eyes like someone i've been waiting to visit and take into my house. i can't remember the last time i read a pamphlet cover to cover but i did with this, a wee smile with each recognised face.

i don't know these places, who or what is burnie mackinnon, the gantocks or the captayannis and, to be honest, i don't care. i like their shapes, the feel of them as i say their names - if nothing else this is a collection that deserves to be read out loud by somebody scottish! - and i love the fine detail, small changes where i can see a point where marion has (finally!) decided that this is the finished article. yes, i say, i see what you did there.

from my own perspective i like the later poems. not that there's any indication of what these are but i know and for me these are where i find marion's voice at her most confident and, collected like this, gives me great sense of anticipation for what she does next (sad that, it always about what comes next!). there is great language here, when i read it i get the same sensation as i do when i look up words in foreign language dictionaries, taking the familiar and transform it on my tongue. i can't be doing much with questions of meaning, it's all about the feel and vintage sea feels great.

easily my favourite collection of the year so far and a great addition to the calderwood stable (nice one, colin) who are doing a release in glasgow on the 17th of this month. i'll certainly endeavour to be there.


The river whitens the birch wood trunks.
I lie as foreign as coloured glass amidst the mossy greens,
shadows of birds flying across my skin.
Shushing leaves fill the sky with the rush of the sea,
and above my closed eyes
the clouds become boats filled with Nessmen
as they sail to the gannet skerry
where they'll find me, in another life,
among the kittiwakes, the sea pinks,
cormorants feeding their young in my ribcage.

buy it here

Wednesday, 8 June 2011


Amergin’s Charm

I am a stag : of seven times,
I am a flood : across a plain,
I am a wind : on a deep lake,
I am a tear : the Sun lets fall,
I am a hawk : above the cliff,
I am a thorn : beneath the nail,
I am a wonder : among flowers,
I am a wizard : who but I
Sets the cool head a flame with smoke?

I am a spear : that roars for blood,
I am a salmon : in a pool,
I am a lure : from paradise,
I am a hill : where poets walk,
I am a boar : ruthless and red,
I am a breaker : threatening doom,
I am a tide : that drags to death,
I am an infant : who but I
Peeps from the unhewn dolmen arch?

I am the womb : of every holt,
I am the blaze : on every hill,
I am the queen : of every hive,
I am the shield : for every head,
I am the tomb : of every hope.

trans robert graves

Tuesday, 7 June 2011

and back to normal

after the visiting swedish contingent. which of course was far from normal. perhaps you'd think, lightning really can't strike twice. in which case volcanic disruption? surely not.

but, after last year's no show due to icelandic geologic disturbance this year i wandered thru to say - you've seen there's another eruption in iceland. sure enough by the time we got them to the plane edinburgh airport was in chaos, bus rides to newcastle were promised but that airport too was closed by the time the bus didn't appear. so we had them for another few days, which was great.

plan a, to deceive the granny, worked a treat. but i can't lie to my mother protested t. no problem, i said, i can. and duly did. the 'wee stop in edinburgh saw the family appear and fortunately she didn't have a heart attack and all was well.

not quite so for mari, this being her first time in edinburgh and her first time in scotland with a new baby. and therefore her first time in a restaurant where they say, no you can't come in here with a baby. and that before the bad coffee! not a good combo for the swedes but good insight for them into why it's the small differences that are so apparent when we're over there. and more strangely, even when we were out and about, there was a marked difference in the attitude shown to minnie between the natives and tourists of all shapes and sizes. we need to really sort out our attitudes to children in this country (a soap box i have been happy to stand on all my own daughter's life!)

nonetheless, having minnie around was highly entertaining, if tiring. additional granny content was even more tiring but once we'd got her packed off back to london town things settled a bit. i'd forgotten how disruptive to normal life a child is! four people seemed an ideal number to cope and by the end of the week mari especially was more than happy to leave minnie with me. jam, not so much, but he has more limited time with her and didn't want to miss anything.

which kind of put a spoke in my plans to introduce minnie to the world of professional cycling but time enough for that yet. what she did like was being outside and flowers in particular. by the time we got home and google translate was reavailable we'd got right into 'this is the red/yellow/white/blue flower' etc. great fun. but equally, as soon as we started speaking swedish to her, despite her being supposedly prelanguage, we were able to access a completely different set of responses from her. as i said to jam, any self consciousness i may have about apoken swedish is now out the window. i refuse to have a more limited vocabulary than a pre school child!

the most entertaining moment of the week came on the last day when jam and mari were packing. minnie was grumpy so we'd explored the garden and surrounds but still something else was required. i know, i thought, guitar. but of course minnie had never seen or heard a guitar and didn't know what to make of it. her expression was brilliant. not quite wanting to scream or cry, not quite wanting to laugh, not knowing quite what being puzzled is. a wee experience machine!

she soon saw it wasn't just one hand that was moving but still didn't appear sure what the sound was. a combo of tapping the sound box and a bit of peek! did the trick. then we tried her with the piano. and again the same reaction! she doesn't have quite the arm or hand strength to hit the keys so there was limited appeal to that so back down the stairs and this time i decided i'd go for the big whistle. how she loved that! (and her mum who immediately stopped all the packing activity!) not only did she love the sound she could grab the whistle and try and hit me round the head with it! so naturally, along with the marmalade, whisky and sundry other things they departed with a small d whistle which i've encouraged both jam and mari to be able to play by the time i'm next across.

and then the house was empty. both of us had plans for the week - t to finish a felt order and me to break the back of a pamphlet i'm working on. we did nothing (i didn't even cycle)! and now it seemed like a rather colourless activity with only a return to work to look forward to. i have not cleaned away the minnie handprints from all of my stuff!

but back to normal we went. i missed claire's starry rhymes night which was annoying and i thank work for, yet again. but once the work shenanigans took a pause we managed to get away up north to, amongst other things, get an eye on some slavonian grebes and some red throated divers. this in the company of some very noisy dutch people - surely the loudest twitchers i've ever come across - so all was well. of course the lack of cycling (and having a proper chef in the house) has created a santa sized problem across the middle of me but plans for the off road coast to coast in three weeks are well advanced so that should take care of that.

but even yet, minnie should be walking soon. we can't wait to see that!

Monday, 6 June 2011

lin ling

Cloud dissects itself

I was born in the old home of the sun,
My tomb will be the blue green ocean,
Just like the tiny meteorite in the sky.
The lights of the fishing boats,
Returning late at night,
Will be the tears of my mourners.
I always remember,
many years ago there was a girl
Who loved to dress in red.
She slowly walked through the human world,
With gestures of mist,
With the rhythm of rain,
With the melody of a flowing stream.
And the flames and the snowflakes
She scattered so freely
Became the Equator and the North and South Poles.
I always remember -
Like the tiny meteorite in the sky,
The ocean is my emerald tomb,
The lights of the fishing boats,
Homeward bound in the late night,
Are the tear drops of my mourners.

trans unknown

Friday, 3 June 2011

brian patten

And heart is daft

Without understanding any pain but that
Which inside her anyway is made,
This creature singled out creates
Havoc with intelligence. And heart is daft,
Is some crazy bird let loose and blind
That slaps against the night and has
Never anywhere to go. And when a tongue’s
About to speak some nonsense like
‘Love is weak, or blind, or both’, then comes
this crazy bird, pecks at it like a worm.

Wednesday, 1 June 2011

george seferis

Mythistorema XXIII

Just a little more
And we shall see the almond tres in blossom
The marbles shining in the sun
The sea, the curling waves.

Just a little more
Let us rise just a little higher.

trans unknown

for the full thing (different translation) see here