Old Postcards

This is where I wanted to set up tramlines,
and swing on the chain
around the war memorial.
A warning to deaf-mutes.
A homily to bakers
stretching in the pale morning wind.

The scene gradually
darkened by distemper,
paper and street
by the same knife.
Macadamization and death
plan ahead.

Two hieroglyphs—
a bicycle path
to the ruined castle.
But we’re all right.
We’re playing in the black sand.
We’re masticating bread
to seal the cracks in the wallpaper.

Bagpipes on the anniversary of Sedan,
the lindens bloodshot.
Morning morning morning.

Hold on
to the tanners’ ropes
till the angels come
with peaked caps and pashminas,
to go by the evidence on the stones,
the reliable
impression of smoke.

Günter Eich
Angina Days: Selected Poems
Princeton University Press
Tradução de Michael Hoffman

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