Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Susanna's Bath

After Nuno Júdice

I enter the water, which smokes
with steam. Then I fetch The Luz
which surpasses in value all our gold.
My sombreness evaporates, so
fickle immobile, sobbing on cue.
Under the stars of São Oleos
the reflexes of my skin dissolve.

My spirit lifts in accordance
with The Luz, like a quietness that
is whispered. And when The Whole
is explained, described in blazing detail
on my body, around each curve,
I dance inside like a wild snake.
And today the stars are brilliant
like our ancestors of the world.

Enter. Fetch the water. I invite you.
Enter the bath, and we will do well
in the salt of the three courts, the
teeth of the caravans, those boxes that revolve. 
We will hear the chimes of the two sisters,
quiet as The Luz is quiet, 
whose cost is above all else.
Then freshen your skin with the sponge
for the hours have traversed us.

The NaPoWriMo prompt for today is to choose a poem in a language you don’t understand and then translate it into English based on the look of the words and their sounds. I have attempted a translation of O Banho de Susana by Nuno Júdice of Portugal. I did not look at the proper translation until I was finished. But when I did, I was rewarded; Júdice's poem is beautiful and worth reading.

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