Paul Celan / Language Mesh (Sprachgitter)


Eye’s roundness between the bars.

Vibratile monad eyelid
propels itself upward,
releases a glance.

Iris, swimmer, dreamless and dreary:
the sky, heart-grey, must be near.

Athwart, in the iron holder,
the smoking splinter.
By its sense of light
you divine the soul.

(If I were like you. If you were like me.
Did we not stand
under one trade wind?
We are strangers.)

The flagstones. On them,
close to each other, the two
heart-grey puddles:
mouthsfull of silence.

Paul Celan
Michael Hamburger, trans.

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