Oswald von Wolkenstein

franzoisch, mörisch, katlonisch und kastilian,
teutsch, latein, windisch, lampertisch, reuschisch und roman,
die zehen sprach hab ich gebraucht, wenn mir zerran;
auch kund ich fidlen, trummen, paugken, pfeiffen!


Darkness Visible

W. R. Johnson. Darkness Visible: A Study of Vergil's Aeneid. University of California Press: 1976.
The insubstantiality that has been warded off throughout [the Aeneid], though it seems to be about to vanish for good, now returns in full force. Reality dwindles to dream, and the nightmare from which we have been fighting free throughout the poem (velle videmur - for at this moment Vergil includes his readers in his poem) has become the reality. No homeric lucidities or articulations here, for the laws of time and space - like the human capacities for motion, action, and speech - themselves have become void. Action, truth, and their images drain away to nothingness. It is the perfect flowering of the Vergilian imagination, this perfect representation of the monstrous and unreasoning night. The via negativa is now, against all likelihood, as reliable and as expressive a mode of mimesis as the via positiva that Homer's art had brought, in Western poetry, to its great perfection. This formulation and perfection of the negative image go beyond the inwardness or subjectivity or elaborations of the potentialities of poetic mood and poetic music; they rather involve an exploration of the relentless, impenetrable darkness inside us and outside us. The lyricism is sometimes tender and fragile, but it is also sometimes ferocious and unyielding in its search for our real weaknesses and real enemies as well as for the lies and myths we tell ourselves about them. After Vergil, not only the grand desolations of Dante and Milton but also the smaller desolations of Tennyson will be possible:
But, ever after, the small violence done
Rankled in him and ruffled all his heart,
As the sharp wind that ruffles all day long
A little bitter pool about a stone
On the bare coast.
The darkness without and within, the big darkness and the small - Vergil has found ways of imagining them; darkness, all kinds of darkness, is finally made visible. And the boundaries of poetry are extended immeasurably.



Theocritus XVI.106-109
ἄκλητος μὲν ἔγωγε μένοιμί κεν, ἐς δὲ καλεύντων
θαρσήσας Μοίσαισι σὺν ἁμετέραισιν ἴοιμ’ ἄν.
καλλείψω δ’ οὐδ’ ὔμμε· τί γὰρ Χαρίτων ἀγαπητόν
ἀνθρώποις ἀπάνευθεν; ἀεὶ Χαρίτεσσιν ἅμ’ εἴην. 


Why Jerusalem?

Why Jerusalem, why me?
Why not another city? Why not another man?
One time I stood at the Western Wall
When suddenly - a flock of birds.
They cried and flapped their wings like notes scribbled with wishes
Set free from the massive heavy stones,
Flying to the distance.

Yehuda Amichai.
Tradução minha, com a ajuda e guia da Shim.

?למה ירושלים, למה אני
?למה לא עיר אחרת? למה לא אדם אחר
פעם עמדתי לפני הכותל המערבי
ופתאום, להקת ציפורים עלתה למעלה
בקריאות ובמשק כנפיים, כמו פתקות בקשה
שהשתחררו מבין האבנים הגדולות והכבדות
ועפו אל על

יהודה עמיחי

Imagem @


Yehuda Amichai —מות אבי

אָבִי פִתְאם, מִכָּל הַחֲדָרִים
.יָצָא לְמֶרְחַקָּיו הַמוּזָרִים

,הָלוֹך הָלַך לִקְרוא לֵאלוהיו
.שֶהוא יָבוא לַעֲזור לָנוּ עַכְשָו

,וֵאלוהִים כְבָר בָּא, כְּמו טורח
.תָלָה את מעילו עַל וָו-יָרֵח

,אַךְ אֶת אָבִינוּ, שֶיָצָא לְהובילו
.יַחֲזִיק הָאֱלוהים לָעַד אֶצְלו



the rain has come, rain pours down—
o, the time to meet and love in Andalusia!

جادك الغيث إذا الغيث همى
يا زمان الوصل بالأندلس

Ibn al-Khatib 1313-1374
Texto completo

quales sumus talia sunt tempora

הלל אומר: במקום שאין אנשים השתדל להיות איש


Ó Stôr!

Clive Holes. Modern Arabic: Structures, Functions, Varieties (2004)
The only indigenous attempt - and a schematic one at that - at simplifying the complex rules of Classical Arabic was Anis Furayḥa's نحو عربية ميسرة [Towards a Simplified Arabic], published in 1955. There is a presumably apocryphal story that when some of Furayḥa's academic colleagues who earned their living teaching Classical Arabic saw the title of his book, they protested, يا استاذ شلينا نعيس - liberally translated, "Oh Professor, please don't take away our livelihood!"


As You Came From The Holy Land

John Ashbery. Self-Portrait in a Convex Mirror. Penguin (1990)
As You Came From The Holy Land 
of western New York state
were the graves all right in their bushings
was there a note of panic in the late August air
because the old man had peed in his pants again
was there turning away from the late afternoon glare
as though it too could be wished away
was any of this present
and how could this be
the magic solution to what you are in now
whatever has held you motionless
like this so long through the dark season 
until now the women come out in navy blue
and the worms come out of the compost to die
it is the end of any season
you reading there so accurately
sitting not wanting to be disturbed
as you came from that holy land
what other signs of earth's dependency were upon you
what fixed sign at the crossroads
what lethargy in the avenues
where all is said in a whisper
what tone of voice among the hedges
what tone under the apple trees
the numbered land stretches away
and your house is built in tomorrow
but surely not before the examination
of what is right and will befall
not before the census
and the writing down of names 
remember you are free to wander away
as from other times other scenes that were taking place
the history of someone who came too late
the time is ripe now and the adage
is hatching as the seasons change and tremble
it is finally as though that thing of monstrous interest
were happening in the sky
but the sun is stting and prevents you from seeing it 
out of night the token emerges
its leaves like birds alightning all at once under a tree
taken up and shaken again
put down in weak rage
knowing as the brain does it can never come about
not here not yesterday in the past
only in the gap of today filling itself
as emptiness is distributed
in the idea of what time it is
when that time is already past

John Ashbery (1927-2017) In Memoriam