Autors i Autores

Ponç Pons

2. Anglès


Tutto che mi resta è già perduto

Ronsard's roses are long faded now

and God is only one memory more

There are seas beyond the isle I have not seen

and places on green maps where I have not trod

Night is a chamber in the midst of the world

life a vacuum that with words I fill with sense

Where are the snows of which Villon sang

From joy's thick magma I have brought forth two sons

from the years' intimate well a yearning verse

The old owl has not returned this year

nor have sparrows nested in my small room

I dream of that immense Son Bou of the child

I am aging and read Shakespeare again

* * *


In the final world of Tomis,
covered in foreign earth,
lying in an anonymous tomb
buffeted by the saline wind,
you are still living on perhaps
in the memory of those
bygone enamoured women
and we sing to you, old poets
like myself, I who am lyrical,
mature and calm, verses
and aching Romance lament,
our uncertain life.
Time that demolishes all,
consolidates your prestige
and makes your peerless name
ineffaceable forever more,
But now classic, myth,
lover of love, not even sex
endures and futile is
the faded laurel, fame.
We are all seed of oblivion.
The sharp draught that consumes
notes, folders and books
steeps everything in salt.
Being happy is plagiary,
writing a bitter duty.
We do not live, the words
undo us, making of us
feverish seekers
of beauty, the lost
prisoners of a page.
We are wrecked on scribbles.
On Olympus, pure ossuary
of chestnut trees and clouds
kissed by the warm Greek sun,
the gods too have died.
All is smoke and nothing is left
nothing eternal now, Ovid.

* * *


It rains on my childhood
Octavio Paz


Standing by the wild north-coast sea I see the rain raining

Behind this lump in my throat is my childhood heaped

We shall never more know the island’s crude winters

Nor ever again swim nude in the furtive tank

Now careless time presages sterility

And one returns happy to the verses above his room

We ran free through the orchards laden with fruit

We played with our slings in cardoon-sown fields

We did not know in our happiness that we were so poor

Sex was not yet before us and neither was sin

Our evenings overflowed with stories and myths

The wind rose in the sky to the full heart of goodness


Children of sea and limestone with camomile in our eyes

We discovered the names of birds that hid in the woods

On the burning beaches we were arrayed in light

Like Greeks with emery sand our bodies shone

Salt grew in green patios under bunches of grapes

We did not know the world existed and that beyond

The island's coasts there were other gods too

A battered old atlas opened all the ports to me

I read The Odyssey among thickets and pines

Where are they now Son Bou’s deflowered paths

And the trails of reeds by green tamarisk trees

Flying over Addaia are peevish gulls

Here there are still gestures of Civil War

* * *


Because writing is also giving some sense to the world

And saving from disquiet a time that is mortal and absurd

I persevere in the night fervently seeking words

That with emotion will sustain me when life is made verses

* * *


The cultivation of letters
needs no worldly dealings

No one hears me in the immense wood
but the white moon illuminates me

     Wang Wei

Castrated satyr.
Longing has the face
of islands that are lost.

Land of one's birth.
The poem is a garden
where seagulls peck.

Soiled by the city,
I caress a green pine
as if it were a woman.

A grasshopper leaps.
Stealthy and running
boys steal jujube fruit.

Land of farewells.
Warmly gleam the eyes
of the owl under the eaves.

Lunar sex
straightening in the night …
The cats avidly mew.

Crickets and gnats.
In the light of an oil lamp
rasps old the quill.

In vain I persist
in writing poems, words …
What I want is to kiss you!

Lost on the green
track that plunges thick
through the forest, a faun holds forth.

Barefoot, hidden
among the pines, I do
crosswords with the nymphs.

Aborted children
of this island where, droning,
the flies are king.

The beautiful memories
we sowed when we were
children, do not return to life.

Land of sea.
There is no horizon now.
I hear the gulls weeping.

Pines and brushwood.
Going home at night
my company is the path.

Man of insular
words I amorously
tousle grammar.

Translated from the Catalan by Julie Wark ©

Amb el suport de:

Institut d'Estudis Baleàrics