Sunday, August 12, 2012

Last Night Together Parts with the Pumpkins

by Jeff Celan 

            And cacophonous long this lasts, Evening
but joyned in discombobulate leaving;
          Here in overpowering silences of Ephemeral
    Continent should flee to loftier discontents.
        This disconsolate night of hearts, of
              Whippoorwilled havenots,
     Paced in chase of coffeelaced days,
                And synaptical didactic rage,
Bones huesoed white on washed whaling bays,
             Our parting, each part, is a step
                   Too fast for the music;
      Each backward glance a stumble over shuffling
      Feet, a nervous apology given to laughtear eyes,
             A voice admittant to shared anxieties;

         Hopes peak below waters like patient alligators,

    With the night turned over in purple grape abash
     Like salt-strewn watermelon pinafores tied to
             Corded necks of heaven with dendrite rings and roots
    Year by year snapping and Saturnìne lipped
    Trying to be a bib
       A necklaced,
                      tie-laced apron to catch some crumb of a bowling comet.

    The night wind has butcher knives that
Pulp out our gourds
    Scoop out our seeds,
Plant them in rows
        until more squashes orangely grow,
            that carve out our faces
             and place us
        On doorstoops with candlelit
                for faces.

                        “Loneliness is a periodic element,
Elliptically alkaline atoms unsplittable,
    Compounded with nitrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen
        To be breathed in every gulp that our life to
Lungs and tongue must taste and shake of death.
             Our lives are trips to general stores
     Piggybacked on spines of wanting apes, and
  What have we found on these generic shelves
       Not bought and consumed by everyone else?
It will never leave us, No not us--
       Forever this caged feeling of emptiness.
              We will be doomed to stroll in the Deli-Bakery
Amongst sourdough rolls, sandwiches, cakes, and raspberrycheese Danishes.
   It will be three in the morning but the superstore will be open
And frequented by insomniacs and zombies like us.
      This is where we must depart,
    At your house.
Tomorrow you will be gone from under the poplar groves
   To flit cordially amongst houses waving sun in a foreign cloudstrung city
       And pass through the jungled ghettoes and
           Jacaled hoves
That spackle the shores,
boards gessoed, cracking and gritty,
    Stirring the inverse and brinespanked wind.”

Must our always coming winter
          chew up,
       and vomit our
Leaves into chirruping throats
       off the fetalplumed thrush,
Gnarl up our roots
           and arthritic limbs while
              by the logcrack fire, red
Snow melts from the soles of waterproof boots?
      Blue and black rivers of makeup have fertilized your face and
Made my love for you grow into a flowerbed already withered.

            “We will speak around the subject
And circumvent all our present night;
     Last among the ones we passed from branch to branch
         In the uncertain northerly breeze
              That pressed our changing leaves.
Be a head,
           Be ahead
               Of your whiteveiled winter
     And snap the icicles dripping off the pocked
                    Vinylsiding lintel.
            Yes wear your coat and wrap your arms,
         Clasp your arms in crossed bundles
            Around your chest.  Protect and keep it warm.
          Savor all feelings of bark and sand
             And roughness and bumps to rub.”

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