Noua Mecca a basarabenilor şcoliţi din generaţiile mai tinere pare să fie Marea Britanie; deloc întâmplător aşadar că şi Albionul se arată uneori interesat de realităţile Republicii Moldova – stă mărturie, în acest sens, publicaţia britanică The Seventh Quarry Poetry, din vara-toamna 2022, număr dedicat THE ROMANIAN CONTEMPORARY POETRY OF MOLDOVA, Peter Thabit Jones, Editor. Traducerile sunt semnate, la patru mâini, de Olimpia Iacob & Jim Kacian, iar autorii selectaţi sunt (în ordinea intrării în revistă): Leo Butnaru, Mircea V. Ciobanu, Nicolae Popa, Nicolae Spătaru, Vasile Gârneţ, Ilie T. Zegrea, Ludmila Sobietsky, Teo Chiriac, Liliana Armaşu, Irina Nechit, Emilian Galaicu-Păun, Andrei Ţurcanu, Iulian Filip, Marcela Benea, Ion Hadârcă, Vasile Romanciuc şi Arcadie Suceveanu. (Mărturisesc, n-am înţeles ce criteriu a stat la baza Cuprinsului, căci nici ordinea alfabetică – şi atunci ar fi trebuit să se înceapă cu Armaşu –, nici după anul naşterii – şi atunci Vasile Romanciuc ar fi trebuit să treacă în faţă –, ca să nu mai vorbim de scara valorică, nu funcţionează în cazul de faţă; cert este că selecţia e cât se poate de credibilă, cel puţin pe un segment de istorie literară, privilegiind generaţia ’70, urmată de poeţii optzecişti, iar pe post de benjamin apărând nouăzecista Liliana Armaşu.)
Un CV redus la minimul necesar, câteva poeme – între două (în majoritatea cazurilor) şi cinci (în cazul câtorva privilegiaţi) –, totul în doar treizeci de pagini dense (de la p. 5 la p. 35); îngăduie-mi-se să nu lungesc vorba, ci să-i înfăţişez rând pe rând. Un poet – un poem:
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Beauty and Revival
The world is still beautiful. . .
Either because it has been saved by the beauty foreseen by Dostoievski
or because finally the world has succeeded in saving beauty. . .
The truth is, therefore, that the world is more beautiful
than Phoenix, the bird,
every time it rises renewed from the ashes
begins to reincarnate starting with the eyes—
beginning with its pupils, it looks
to see, the oracular bird, if
coming back to this world is worth it
which, look, is still beautiful,
and which the Phoenix still considers bearable (but, it seems, from one
to another – ever less,
ever less. . . )
Mircea V. CIOBANU
and then all words withdrew
swallowed one another (hard)
they empied themselves – grew hollow when meanings
left them (o, it’s a whole story here!).
no one remembers any more
who the poet was
that is, who”the liberator” was,
they only remember how meanings
shook off their words,
rising (their dignity kept rising!), unbending.
and then they, all, well, aimlessly started to walk through taverns,
like Alecsandri’s gypsies that had been set free
in the first tavern, they raised their glasses to “freedom”;
in the second one, to the “liberating” poet
(though this one had absolved them from disgust),
then to the idea “liberating in itself”
in the next tavern meaningskept evolving –
there was already complete freedom
kind-heartedly, they wanted to drink also for
the words from which they had escaped
but they did not remember what their names had been,
they did not even know them,
they had drunk them all.
the following day meanings, fuddled,
began to light little by little :
a little bulb at first,then another,
they lit very painnnnnnnfully!
something started within them, began to make sense
“this is called resetting,” they said, with an air of
expert and veeeeery patient understanding
finally they met again after resetting and doctoring
with prophyilactic brandy
they met again in very accidental words and veeeery approximate,
they had become curses overnight.
One thousand years before the sun
A thunder bolt changes the line of the wind.
Scents, dust and locks
are taken and carried,
where we shall no longer be.
A huge stone sinks into the river,
It rolls through the water for a while,
then it comes out to dry on the other bank.
It lies there for a thousand years before the sun
it rolls into the water again.
From the open sky there fall smoking embers.
Then a drop of rain falls
it does not purify us.
the apocalypse is once again delayed
from one coffee to another
they do refreshing
and metaphysical exercises
the cigarette smoke drifts from one corner of the bar
like an amazing piece of news
they serve us the town in lumps of sugar
and we humbly drop them into the cups of coffee
enjoying their resemblance
to dreamy infernal boilers
this night has been torn from calendars
in an undertone the streets massage
the crossings afflicted with arthritis
it is late
and they eat the remains
somewhere they hear the first tram like a prayer
in the language of a dying man
and the apocalypse is once again delayed
evening my right to sadness
which is but a form of tiredness
I feel like a stuck vehicle
I stand in the weak light of the room
I look without doing anything and
silence descends as if on the blade of the knife
there is also Joan and her passion for
romantic and contrasting up to the limit
when she plays something about the bad luck of
or about how sometimes it rains here in December
Jung’s notebooks open on the table
make the provincial feeling even more oppressive
Ilie T. ZEGREA
The Last Supper
. . . But this winter, too, in fine edition,
will end with repulsive puddles,
even before the second coming of the Savior. . .
at the crossings of winds and dreams
where politics prostitutes
through the capitals of countries in transition,
cutting after our body the straightjacket of reality,
someone(you or I, maybe)
still throws an armful of memories
into the mouth of the engine. . .
Look, someone has put heaven up for auction,
and someone else’s being
is Judas’ very sticky kiss . . .
the fog you have vanished into
The fog has swallowed the roar of the town sound by sound
and like an exigent drinker it slowly sips
from someone’s love whisper,
from a woman’s laughter caressed by the sweet words
so long unhoped and cried for.
The fog skillfully relishes
silence’s vague-bitter agreement,
even the last thought of that one who goes away
devoid of illusionsbut displeased.
The fog drinks lustily like a beast cornered by thirst
the dew of your voice
in my memory that now gets dry
and gives birthto the image of instant
and of the fog you have vanished into
Little song for lulling Death to sleep
It was beautiful it was true it was good
reading and rereading books spent my youth
from T.S. Eliot’s work I preferred The Hollow Men
in Petru Creţia’s translation, a brilliant Romanian specialist in Eminescu
It was beautiful it was real it was very good
Reading the stars will eat my old age
It will be good it will be beautiful it will be real
the rain’s diamonds will scatter on the asphalt
the moon will put on the golden mask of the sun with teeth
above the grottoes of light devouring saints
it will be good it will be beautiful it will be true
from my eyes there will spring crystalized blue
at the sight of the grottoes adorned with light
with stalactite-rays with stalagmite-rays
It is real it is good it is beautiful
angels sing souls frisk gods enjoy
I put down the book and the book drifts–it does not fall down
it is true it is good it is terribly beautiful
like Tarkovski’s guide I wander through memory’s zone
crying out – shaken – with every step: “I remember!
I remember! I remember!!!”
The imperceptible charm of life
Why would we fret so much
and seek big, incomprehensible things
when through an imperceptible touch of our hands,
bearers of warmth and memories,
we could catch God’s smile?
Our small imperfections make us so vivid,
that sometimes even the moon seems to stop from its nocturnal walk,
melting with pleasure in our crystal glasses
that resound with full and long life.
Come on, tell me that all will remain as we know it is
smiles, sorrows and summers barefoot,
And these words, which will do all in our place
while we are absent for quite a short time
to make tea or bitter coffee –
a happy opportunity for us to touch our hands
by chance. . .
Elegy to my face
I had gentle lines
but someone brushed them away so quickly
that I hardly came to utter a word
beat with the fist in the table
or cry as if from a snake’s hole.
I do not accept to have another face
or skin other cheek bones and other eyelids
my eyes ask me horrified
where my mole on the cheek
and those two glances with golden depths are
Maybe one night I fell asleep so deeply
that water came like a flood
and washed my features away,
then a leech came
and sucked my former face.
I no longer recognize myself.
she dances on the sphere he sits down on a cube
and when she does splits she seems to be the horizon line
the rope of which she, too, skips
and when she approaches her palms as if
she received it at her birth and raised it on her hands: “she’s a little girl!” as if
she played it like a tread on her ten fingers as in her childhood, carefully
not to spoil the figure – the same
so as to be taken by someone else, just as
they took off her fingers her line of life in her palm
My brother. . .
Ah, these snows
that turn into worms right before my flocks!
And you, my fellow creature, my rigid and ambiguous neighbor,
Stuttering near the offering fire with your mouth losing itself into the bread:
“Holding the shepherds in reverence is of no use to the planet.”
like some wild beasts with their throats cut turn round
in the rolls of smoke rising in glory.
O, these snows! and this light quivering
over the fur caps of my mountains!
You call me out to come to the plain, my brother.
And I, thrilled like a harp,
how to know that the inferno is the others?
I kiss your hand that tightly holds the stone
I take the blood that flows into the dust for the flood of milk
and in the endless night I beseech you,
my fellow creature, my neighbour, my brother
my fellow creature, my neighbour, my brother Cain.
You Too? Even You?
It is hard until you come to understand,
that it is not one,
that it is not only one
holding a stone,
a stone destined for you
After the 7th one
after you have realized
that there is not only one
holding a stone,
you begin to pick up the stones
destined only for you,
more and more stones,
and the wall of stones ,
the wall ever higher,
becomes your defender,
it defends you,
it protects you from seeing them,
the throwers of the stones. . .
Quite a subtle art to guess
The next thrower in the file
after the size and the force by which
every stone is thrown:
Even you, V?
Even you, C?
Even you, T?
Even you, S?
Even you, O?
Even you, A?
Even you, I?
Even you, D?
So many people know you!
What happiness for you
to be surrounded
by such people,
who do not forget you,
who pay you such attention you
with such different stones –
though not rare. .
A Straight Line
An azure arch, a silent bell
under which God arranges the seasons –
to joys he adds other brightness,
to sadness seas of tears,
disappointments you share with nobody.
But when man remains alone,
quite alone among mountains of pain –
the horizon above him
is but a narrow strip,
a straight line, a cable
upon which the swallow does not alight to sing.
when he came into the Hall
full of smoke
populated with smokes
cancelled all the classes
of rhetoric, logic and philosophy
and he proclaimed the new course
and altogether unwritten—
the course on butterflies’ traces
on the way of silk
still could wander
then he himself
vanished without a trace
in search of
the most whimsical
Leave a mark
Leave, leave a mark
by all means
on the face of the day that passes
known only by you
will not deceive you
you will realize, of course
if the day that comes
is a new day
or the yester day
that, in unsuspected ways,
shows up before you again
The apple fallen in love with its worm
The white worm sleeps in the red apple
The red worm sleeps in the white apple
Since its birth
the white worm has been in love with the red apple –
which seems to be quite normal to me
And also the red worm: since its first day
it has been in love with the white apple –
which also seems to be
quite natural to me
The novel charm of this sweet story
at the end of the century
is that one day the red apple, too,
finds itself in love with the white worm
as the white apple, too, finds itself in love
with the red worm–
a happening that makes us think
of the harmony of opposites in nature;
This is the whole story of the apple
fallen in love with its own worm–
an apple that can be seen
on your table