Thursday, January 15, 2009

First Meetings

We celebrated every moment
Of our meetings as epiphanies,
Just we two in all the world.
Bolder, lighter than a bird's wing,
You hurtled like vertigo
Down the stairs, leading
Through moist lilac to your realm
Beyond the mirror.

When night fell, grace was given me,
The sanctuary gates were opened,
Shining in the darkness
Nakedness bowed slowly;
Waking up, I said:
'God bless you!', knowing it
To be daring: you slept,
The lilac leaned towards you from the table
To touch your eyelids with its universal blue,
Those eyelids brushed with blue
Were peaceful, and your hand was warm.

And in the crystal I saw pulsing rivers,
Smoke-wreathed hills, and glimmering seas;
Holding in your palm that crystal sphere,
You slumbered on the throne,
And - God be praised! - you belonged to me.
Awaking, you transformed
The humdrum dictionary of humans
Till speech was full and running over
With resounding strength, and the word you
Revealed its new meaning: it meant king.
Everything in the world was different,
Even the simplest things - the jug, the basin -
When stratified and solid water
Stood between us, like a guard.

We were led to who knows where.
Before us opened up, in mirage,
Towns constructed out of wonder,
Mint leaves spread themselves beneath our feet,
Birds travelled by the same route as ourselves
And in the river upstream,
And the sky unrolled itself before our eyes,
When fate was following in our tracks
Like a madman with a razor in his hand.

Arseny Tarkovsky

4 comments:

Roxana said...

oh wonderful, wonderful, kubla, thank you for posting this.

Kubla Khan said...

This poem is one of Arseny Tarkovsky's best. a lot is lost in translation though.i choose the last four lines from a choice of three bad translations. i think the poem figures in the Mirror, not sure though.
and you are welcome.

Anonymous said...

this is a bad translation. use the one in mirror.

Atenea said...

minute 1 and on

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WizRy6zqRd0&feature=PlayList&p=09DD25E1D7916521&index=1

(thank you for reminding me to watch this film)