From day to day all I give you are things that evaporate:
mist over asphalt, mist in pockets
and fields stripped bare by beastly words.
Instead of a ticket for two
I offer you passages through the eyes of needles.
From day to day, I pour in front of your feet
beautiful dead seas.
We live by counterfeiting
chronic freedom: the address is known.
Between the main prison and the old sugar works
where poets used to end up, and where now
other down-and-outs gather vanished delights.
But I think all I need is one town:
the network of streets created by your veins.
Tent and refuge provided by your skin.
And that your hair is the Birnam forest
that will come towards me even
while I stand rooted, like a candle:
burning too strongly sometimes sticks me to the ground.
I deceive myself that water pouring
from mouth to mouth is enough,
even when it turns to ice.
In your land of the young with overmature minds
I am an immature girl who needs to be led by the hand.
In mine, were time had come to a standstill a long time ago,
I carry the soul of the old and the views of a wise bitch.
Your are telling me I have to get used to
a new aggregate state:
what evaporates in the boiling south
you change here by handwork into water
which you can sell for goods.
You bend over,
rest your heavy head in your hand:
your sigh increases the distance
between our two half-empty glasses;
mine pushes them to the edge of our table.
“I buy immediately, but I pay with my body”, I say
and lick a droplet of sweat off your brow:
it seemed to me to glow like
the end of a cigarette.
“Too much comparison kills even a poem,”
I hear you say, seeing that your
entire hair and cheeks are already aflame:
only I don’t know whether because of excitement
Translated by: Evald Flisar