Levante

August 10, 2009

Levante
[poem by Giuseppe Ungaretti; translation by Dan Stone]

La linea
vaporosa muore
al lontano cerchio del cielo

Picchi di tacchi picchi di mani
e il clarino ghirigori striduli
e il mare è cenerino
trema dolce inquieto
come un piccione

A poppa emigranti siriani ballano

A prua un giovane è solo

Di sabato sera a quest’ora
Ebrei
laggiù
portano via
i loro morti
nell’imbuto di chiocciola
tentennamenti
di vicoli
di lumi

Confusa acqua
come il chiasso di poppa che odo
dentro l’ombra
del
sonno

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Levant

The vaporous
line dies
at the distant circle of the sky

Heels clack hands clap
and the shrill arabesques of the clarinet
and the ashen sea
trembling sweet and restless
as a pigeon

Syrian emigrants dance at the stern

A young man is alone at the prow

On Saturday evening at this hour
Jews
down south
carry off
their dead
into the snail’s funnel
waverings
of alleyways
of lights

Churning water
like the racket from the stern that I hear
within the shadow
of
sleep

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: