Poem – Kosovo 

(for Jan Tuzinsky) 

A

paper Goethe

prays

in Serb

for four hundred dead children

In Schiller’s stone eye

gleams a tear of mercury

There’s a Gypsy weeping

for a little Romany fairy

at the bottom of the Adriatic

Blood

has an irresistible color

of the bluish dusk of the sky

from which falls

light and glitterings

like a gust of May rain

to fertilize the wounded earth.
(2002) 

Poem – Into The Blue

From morning we tirelessly squander ourselves into the blue,

which falls short of the border between water and sky.

Into the blue in which the swimming routes of fish cross

with the flight lines of birds.

Into the blue in which the slow movement of ships

cross the glittering fuselages of aeroplanes.

Into the blue

which though the power of its will

casts us back on to a sandy beach

together with other things over and above,

together with the dead bodies of fish, crabs and medusas,

together with fragments of seaweed,

tiny pebbles,

tops of Coca-Cola bottles,

together with scraps of paper

closed in bottles of sweet drinks.

We always read from the beginning

and on each side

these letters without lettering

completely whitened by the life-giving sun,

which knows very well whom to give a chance to and whom to not.

We read letters without lettering

and understand them frozenly.

We read letters without lettering

wept over by foaming waves

from which life comes,

sound, color and the divine.

The descendants of goddesses today dwell

in the endless rivieras of the whole world.

they declare nakedness

and godlike motor boats, cars, beaches, apartments,

music, films

and above all godlike men. 

At an ice-cream kiosk

I fell head over heels with one for the hundredth time.

It’s of no account

but it was her

with whom I shared a few experiences, memories,

children.

I fell in love with her completely

without reservation.

From the ice-cream stands

naked poster girls smiled at us

and the portrait of a statesman

wearing a admiral’s white uniform

in the blue background,

which could represent water as well as sky

and in which could move

atomic submarines as well as jet planes

and neon fish as well as rainbow birds.
(1985) 

Poem – Family Study 

Always when I think of you

Dawn breaks above Buenos Aires

and the Atlantic has the inexplicable color of your eyes.

Exotic birds

nest on out TV aerial

until the announcer

has a pearly hairdo

and complete blonde smile.

She claims that eternity has already lasted a whole year.

The weather forecast

announces in her place

a rainbow parrot.

For our wedding route

it wishes us little cloudiness

and success at least as large as the discovery of America

or the record flight of the ostrich from Australia

to the zoological gardens of Europe.

Always when I think of you

dawn breaks above Buenos Aires

and the wind whirls the pamphlets

of all the airlines in the world.

The Atlantic does not admit any other continent.

It’s clear as a stone of precious clarity.

Despite its twinkling depth it resembles a question

which posed passionately by your body.

Children search tirelessly for an answer

till now unwritten in books

and cut out colorful pictures from it.

It happens at home

behind whose windows fireworks blaze every evening.

Always when I think of you

dawn breaks above Buenos Aires.

And today, too, the Atlantic is completely upset.

It’s completely bashful

as its accustomed only to invisible phenomena.
(1981) 

Prolonging My Understanding -Pavol Janik 

For a while I hesitated,

at the place where one enters.

And then so many mirrors

as if after death or during it.

And so many unreal girls

in the shallow depths of the glass.

There, where I entered for the last time

still as a boy with portraits

of Pierre Brice and Lex Barker in a pocket,

was the window of a small wine tavern.

And above it the warning signals

of red pelargonia

had permanently remained.

These inexorable semaphores

which didn’t permit me

to speak in the direction of the wind

and turn aside as the wall approached.

I grew up

to the level of salaries,

the length of debts,

to measurable historical latitudes

and to a size

where the era of dieting begins.

Now only my hair grows

slowly and completely pointlessly.

and thus I come

to prolonging my understanding

and ridding myself of the purchasing power

of a powerless Samson.

On the Line Man – Wowan & Black – Pavol Janik

You escape from melike gas.

With astonishment I watch

how with a single scrawl of your legs

you ignite your silk dress.
With such blinding nakedness you pre-empt sky-blue flame.
Blazingly ablaze and perhaps wholly otherwise

I address a fire

which you will no longer damp down.
That time I wanted to declare at least what was essential

to all chance passers-by,

to all chance passing aircraft.
So under such circumstances who wouldn’t have spoilt it?
(1981)