I, AND OTHER VICIOUS CIRCLES – Jorge Plaza

Spanish poet, native of Murcia, Jorge Plaza has not long ago published Yo, y otros círculos viciosos (Idea, 2010) in Arrefice, Lanzarote, and he would like us to read it as poets, so much he says in the introduction: assuming the I that he has put forth, as itself. While I was reading these poems and starting to think about I, and other vicious circles, I was struck by the strange tonality of a chord that was ringing through several poems in a confluence of intimacy and desolation, and it then occured to me that, to assume the I of the poem as a poet, I would have to translate. So, here is a reading, I mean a writing, in compliance with the author’s wishes.

–JM

A traveler in transit…

A traveler, in transit, an expert,
who reads the paper & takes a stance
first taken by others, is rarely
affected by goodbyes. Today I notice
that something inside unstitches me
and leaves a heart exposed.
Embarrassed, unnerved and
afraid it will melt down,
I touch my chest. I find an electric
muscle that beats and today,
not without certain stupor,
sprays my sorrow.
The day sways toward twilight.
For your doubts I’ve got certainty
and sew patches on its sides.

A un viajero en tránsito…

A un viajero en tránsito, experto,
que lee la prensa y que adopta poses
inventadas por otros, los adioses
raramente le duelen. Hoy advierto
que algo en mi interior se me descose
y deja un corazón al descubierto.
Por algo de rubor, de desconcierto
y miedo a que de pronto se rebose,
me palpo el pecho. Encuentro un músculo
eléctrico que late y que hoy supura,
no sin cierto estupor, mi pesadumbre.
Bascula el día hacia el crepúsculo.
Para tus dudas tengo certidumbres
y hago remiendos para sus costuras.

— | — | — | —

What must the stone be thinking…

What must the stone be thinking
that crowns the high peak of Kilimanjaro?
Does it feel fortunate for his glory
for being high among the heights of this world?
Or might it consider that honor misfortune
that banishes it to desolation?
And if by virtue of their massiveness
stones were to speak a different language?
And were the stone to speak with its wake
while shattered it rolls through the kosmos?
And were it to speak with beacon light?
(When it reaches land, I will know.)

Qué pensará la pidra que corona…

¿Qué pensará la piedra que corona
el alto pico del Kilimanjaro?
Se sentirá dichosa de su gloria
de ser alta entre las altas de este mundo?
¿O se sentirá ese honor como infortunio
que la obliga a estar sola hasta desmoronarse?
¿Y si en virtud de su grandeza hablaran
las piedras una lengua diferente?
¿Y si hablara la piedra con su estela
mientras rueda hecha añicos por el cosmos?
¿Y si hablara con luz como los foros?
(Cuando vuelva a la tierra lo sabré).

— | — | — | —

Today I realize I’m not a stone…

Today I realize I’m not a stone
since I don’t even remotely understand the anxiety
that’s moved it to rise in himalayas.
I also can’t seem to empathize when it’s under the weather
and longing in front of this crouching, compact
and shiny lifeform we call stone
I’ve fallen victim to the prejudice
of thinking it’s inert.

Hoy descubro que no soy una piedra…

Hoy descubro que no soy una piedra
pues ni remotamente entiendo qué inquietud
la ha llevado a ergirse en himalayas.
Tampoco llego empatizar cuando se enferma
y extrañando ante esta forma de vida agazapada
compacta y recia que llamamos piedra
me he dejado llevar por el prejuicio
de pensarla inerte.

— | — | — | —

That old catharsis of the rock…

That old catharsis of the rock,
a landscape of overflowed stone,
all coagulate and scab,
splits open like a gash between volcanoes.
Old mute tongue, silent,
no longer capable of thunder and lightening,
you have lost the word’s glow
dissolved it all in arcane silence.

Esa viaje cartásis de la roca…

Esa vieja catársis de la roca,
un paisaje de piedra derramada,
toda coágulo y costra,
se abre como una herida entre volcanes.
Vieja lengua muda, silenciosa,
ya incapaz del trueno y del relámpago
has perdido el fulgor de la palabra
disuelta toda en un silencio arcano.

*(Otra lectura, ofrecida por Mario Domínguez Parra, se encuentra aquí.)

This entry was posted in Jorge Plaza, Trans. from Spanish, Why Translate? and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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