The Drought

To N. D. R.

Don’t be afraid, you will forget me;

This feeling, by name invoked,

Will wither gradually as distance separates us;

In a succession of white days of drought,

Time will turn into dust the soil,

And into ash the leaves;

/

You will not think of me forever

With the same yearning as today;

When you still saw but couldn’t reach me,

My image growing smaller, features blurring,

Until, frustrated and surprised, you realized

You hardly knew my face;

/

Don’t feel ashamed to let the strings,

Which still tie you to me,

Break, as all things do,

Or to agree with friends, who tell you

That I was nothing special –

It is absolutely true;

/

You can replace me with another,

My spark is not the only light;

Don’t be afraid, you will forget me

When the new spring’s rains feed

The seeds

Of all new life

The Guest from the Past

This place in my memory

Never was as I see it;

The words I hear echoing

Were by Time paraphrased;

/

The nostalgia I feel

Half-dreaming up, half-remembering

My past is but myself

Trying to make peace with me;

/

There were things that I treasured,

A few people, who loved me,

There was a house to call home

And a county – my own;

/

I’ve been running for years

From the routine some call happiness;

This nostalgia I feel

Is the gap between myself and me

I Love

I love the cool transparency

Of the Himalayan skies;

The calm, unfeeling way the sun

Shines without warmth upon

The powerful black pyramids,

The chrystal mountain tops,

And the tiny figures frozen to

Their ragged ridges and their endless slopes;

/

I love the deceiving embrace

Of cold lakes and ocean depths;

One moment it will comfort you,

The next — strangle to death;

The waves will share their fairy-tales

And secrets with one man,

While another will be driven mad

By a sudden storm’s black rage;

/

I love the true, raw loneliness

Of a fighter in the ring,

Where fears collide and courage hides,

Where dreams turn into demons;

Where the audience curses and cheers

The winner of the fight,

While the loser, destroyed, disappears,

Into the quiet of doubt;

/

I love the roads that can’t be built

And those, which know the rhythm

Of thousands of pilgrims’ feet,

And the tales of sins they want forgiven;

Those roads, which take you to the edge,

Where, off the precipice,

You can send flying down a rock

Or a burdensome memory;

/

These things I love and want the most

Run, like sand, through my fingers;

Not for a moment they’ll pretend

That they exist solely for me;

One day I wish I could become

Just like the things I love –

Like a diamond which outlives each owner,

Oblivious to touch, impervious to time;