Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Tuesday Teaser 3

And so, literally at the stroke of my midnight, your newest Tuesday Teaser, an excerpt from my "purse book," because it's always a good idea to have some fantastic poetry on your person. Makes ya look smart. 

Since poetry reads differently than fiction, I did two stanzas instead of two lines. The piece (in English) is called "Duration,"  from Octavio Paz's Configurations. On the left is the Spanish original (sans accent marks which I cannot for the life of me remember how to make right now), and the right, the English translation.

"Duracion"                                               "Duration"

I.                                                             I.
Negro el cielo                                          Sky black
                      Amarilla la tierra                                 Yellow earth
El gallo desgarra la noche                         The rooster tears the night apart
El agua se levanta y pregunta la hora         The water wakes and asks what time it is
El viento se levanta y pregunta por ti         The wind wakes and asks for you
Pasa un caballo blanco                             A white horse goes by

II.                                                             II.
Como el bosque en su lecho de hojas       As the forest in its bed of leaves
Tu duermes en tu lecho de lluvia               You sleep in your bed of rain
Tu cantas en tu lecho de viento                 You sing in your bed of wind
Tu besas en tu lecho de chispas                You kiss in your bed of sparks

See?! Isn't that wonderful? Don't you just have to go read him now? I'm especially fond of "Blanco," it's just so intense, so well-wrought, with this incredible, incredible organic sense of structure and word craft and and so many layers of meaning and myth, and, and, just, oh, I could go on and on...!

I'm a Paz fan; can you tell?

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