16 September 2004

napo #20 -- Transtromer

after "Breathing Space July" by Tomas Transtromer, translated by Robert Bly

Days at Camp Wisconsin

The girl who dives deep for soap in the green lake
is sheer ambition. She plummets through meters like a water-
     splintering plumb line.
She sprouts fins and tail,
she seeks with a propelling desire that ambushes foes in commotion.

The man who points up the speed boat tosses a rope over the stern.
Boats give armature to men.
Those gas-fueled motors dragging skiiers like spoor.
The shearing wake that swamps canoes.

The girl who hikes the rough trails through a green wood
sprawling over the elephant hills
will stake a tent at last beside the rill of a white brook
as the stones ripen like black fruit against the sky.

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