Friday, April 6, 2007

Jacques Réda: The Correspondent

The time comes when I don't sleep for hours on end at night.
At first, I tossed and turned in bed like a crazed woman.
Then, sometime later, I began composing letters
To kind and faraway parties. I who know no one.
Now I see in the darkness, as on screens of distant
In the countryside, gestures in the dust of the stars.
It's me, speaking to break fields of daisies into bloom.
If I wanted, I believe I could put them on paper;
And I think my dreams deserve to be told, too.
In a white dress, I descend flight after flight of stairs.
At the bottom some people are anxiously awaiting me:
Oh! we've received your letter, my darling... It's midnight.
Chatting, they slip away under the floodlighted trees.
Somnambulistic automobiles silently pass.
The boulevards touch the sea's edge. And I laugh;
There, beneath the wall, you're compressed into a narrow shadow,
As in the childhood orchard, when I dared not utter
a cry.

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