Roberto Juarroz: Tenth.9

Tenth.9

Every poem is a hesitation of history.
Covering history with poems
is like displacing its layers
beyond the actions of men.

The poem also is an act,
a movement of the earth we tread,
but in the reverse direction,
toward where everything is absent.

There, where almost everything goes in the end,
but in a sad and forced procession,
invoking the bones of history,
with its Lenten, overlaid zones.

The poem leaps out of history
like a hunted animal
that overturns those layers,
and puts another layer on top: the infinite.

And then the hunted animal
discards its fossilized prey of history
and also sheathes its claws,
running at last free in the air.

Translated by Mary Crow

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