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        THE EXILE

Corroborating forever the triumph of things.
Walt Whitman.

The atmosphere, the very atmosphere unravels
Invisible in its graceless fiber
the object disavows even itself.
The gentle air prowls bent by squalls.
Everything is nebulous. The moon cannot be missing.
This way, so hidden,
is it you, moon, erasing and blurring everything?
Clumsy, drunk perhaps,
remembering so little of our lives.

The world fits into our forgetting.

This dark tangible dankness smells of bridge
with well-worn stone railing
for mock musings about suicide.

Zero is always there, central. In this plaza
so many streets are cancelled out and undone

And suddenly
                        Out of the way!
                                                    Smooth ruthless
a treacherous bicycle whizzes past.
Treacherous momentum of pure profile
rushing toward
what subtle
without making a sound?
The impending moment throbs.
The world fits into our forgetting?

Between two breaths
from below, a cloud now splits
showing a hint of ravaged sky.
The bicycle
slips past and plummets into a chaos
modest still.

"What is this?
Chaos, perhaps?"
the fog, nothing more, the silly fog.
The No
with no demon, the dallying darkness
that never destroyed anything.
It's late now to dream up Nothing."

Give me back, darkness, give me back what's mine:
the blessed things, their bulk and their dew.


Jorge Guillén
Translated by Cola Franzen

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