“Entre irse y quedarse”: poemas de llegada y partida / “Between going and staying”: poems of arrival and departure: Paz, Hoagland, Adekunle, Segovia, Sasha, Das

Melbourne Australia_Flinders Street Station railway line_September 2014

“Entre irse y quedarse”: poemas de llegada y partida / “Between going and staying”: poems of arrival and departure: Paz, Hoagland, Adekunle, Segovia, Sasha, Das

Octavio Paz (1914-1998, México)
Between Going and Staying
(translated from Spanish by Eliot Weinberger)

Between going and staying the day wavers,
in love with its own transparency.
The circular afternoon is now a bay
where the world in stillness rocks.
All is visible and all elusive,
all is near and can’t be touched.
Paper, book, pencil, glass,
rest in the shade of their names.
Time throbbing in my temples repeats
the same unchanging syllable of blood.
The light turns the indifferent wall
into a ghostly theatre of reflections.
I find myself in the middle of an eye,
watching myself in its blank stare.
The moment scatters. Motionless,
I stay and go: I am a pause.
. . .
Octavio Paz
Entre irse y quedarse
Entre dude el día,
enamorado de su transparencia.
La tarde circular es ya bahía:
en su quieto vaivén se mece el munco.
Todo es visible y todo es elusivo,
todo está cerca y todo es intocable.
Los papeles, el libro, el vaso, el lápiz
reposan a la sombra de sus nombres
Latir del tiempo que en mi sien repite
la misma terca sílaba de sangre.
La luz hace del muro indiferente
un espectral teatro de reflejos.
En el centro de un ojo me descubro;
no me mira, me miro en su mirada.
Se disipa el instante. Sin moverme,
yo me quedo y me voy: soy una pausa.

. . .

Tony Hoagland (born 1953, USA)
Coming and Going

My marriage ended in an airport long ago.

I was not wise enough to cry while looking for my car,


walking through the underground garage;

jets were roaring overhead, and if I had been wise


I would have looked up at those heavy-bellied cylinders

and seen the wheelchairs and the frightened dogs inside;


the kidneys bedded in dry ice and Styrofoam containers.

I would have known that in synagogues and churches all over town


couples were gathering like flocks of geese

getting ready to take off, while here the jets were putting down


their gear, getting ready for the jolt, the giant tires

shrieking and scraping off two


long streaks of rubber molecules,

that might have been my wife and I, screaming in our fear.


It is a matter of amusement to me now,

me staggering around that underground garage,


trying to remember the colour of my vehicle,

unable to recall that I had come by cab—


eventually gathering myself and going back inside,

quite matter-of-fact,


to get the luggage

I would be carrying for the rest of my life.

Melbourne AMelbourne BMelbourne CMelbourne DMelbourne EMelbourne F

Adebesin Ibraheem Adekunle (Nigeria)

Coming and Going

The day he comes in: blood and fluid
Squeezing through the path of filthy flow
Emitting tiny deafening wail
Lit faces stream in ceaselessly
And welcome him with lifts and gifts
To this wonderful earthly place
– such is the mirthful miracle of coming!

The day he sheds the thoughts of life
With wool-barred nostrils, ears and mouth
And shrunk remains, as solemn truth
Of the end of this earthly race
Forlorn faces stream in ceaselessly
With reddened eyes, for grim goodbyes
– such is the mirthless miracle of going!

. . .

Tomás Segovia
Leaving on time
Flowing, yes, but in its way
Like a stubborn riverbed,
Like a goat taking off up some mountainside,
frenetic time having you in its hold,
and something in you, something your tongue won’t tell,
like pain’s caress,
shrinks back at the sound of my name,
the name they gave me here, in exchange for something else…

. . .

Tomás Segovia
Salida a Tiempo
Fluye también pero a su modo
Por un lecho obstinado
Como un tirar de cabra a un monte otro
Ese tiempo frenético en el que sostienes
Cuando algo en ti
que nunca habló tu lengua
Como en una caricia del dolor
se encoge
Al escuchar mi nombre
Que me dieron aquí para otra cosa.

. . .
Coming and Going: Friends

We all have many types of friends,
and in our lives they come and go.
But if we understand their roles,
it’s easier when we must let them go.

Some friends are there for you
at a time when you’re in dire need.
They’ve come into your life for a reason,
Giving what you require – indeed.

But when this reason is resolved,
it’s often time to part;
for when that reason is gone,
both may want a fresh start.

Other friends are there for a season,
to laugh with and have lots of fun.
But just as seasons come to an end,
so too the friendships are done.

Some people are fortunate,
they have special lifetime friends
Who’ll remain in their lives forever
– friendships that never end.

Me, I’m lucky – I have many lifetime friends
Who came into my life for a reason.
We’ve had laughs – we’ve shed tears,
But they stayed long after a season.

. . .
Coming and Going
Ashesh Das
wise dusk encircles old oak,
white flowers adorn ancient earth
– footprints of future and past

. . .
Ashesh Das
Llegada y Partida
anochecer sabio rodea el viejo roble,
flores blancas adornan la tierra anciana
– huellas del futuro, huellas del pasado

. . . . .