Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Umberto Fiori

Here I Am

About the puff of dust that rises
between the forsythias and the passing cars,
about this atmosphere of rain, these dead bodies
on television,
look-out calls of crows, sirens
of ambulances,
nobody tells us anything for sure.

The little bar burnt out, the woman
embracing her Dobermann
in the shelter of the gateway there –
the bad or good in them –
we have lost the power to gauge it.

Faces, broken bottles, branches in flower:
the sea in which we’re swimming
pours
into our eyes without end.

And yet when they call out to me
I still turn round – you see?
and make an answer.

HIER BEN IK

Van de stofwolk die opwaait tussen
de forsythia’s en de auto’s,
van deze regenlucht, van deze doden
op de televisie,
dit gekras van kraaien, deze sirenes
van ambulances
geeft niemand ons zekerheid.

Het uitgebrande cafeetje, de vrouw
die haar dobermann omhelst
in de schaduw, hier, van de portiek
− hun wel en hun wee −
bieden ons geen houvast meer.

Gezichten, kapotte flessen, bloesemtakken:
de zee waarin wij zwemmen
verdwijnt
in onze bodemloze ogen.

Maar toch draai ik mij nog wel om als ik
geroepen word − zie je wel? −
en geef antwoord.

ECCOMI

Dello sbuffo di polvere che si alza
tra le forsizie e le macchine,
di quest’aria di pioggia, di questi morti
alla televisione,
richiami di cornacchie, sirene
di ambulanze,
nessuno ci assicura.

Del baretto incendiato, dell’abbraccio
di una donna al suo dobermann
all’ombra, qui, del portone
– del loro male, del loro bene –
abbiamo perso la misura.

Facce, bottiglie rotte, rami fioriti:
il mare in cui nuotiamo
precipita
nei nostri occhi senza fondo.

Eppure quando mi chiamano
mi volto ancora – vedi? –
e rispondo.
Close

Here I Am

About the puff of dust that rises
between the forsythias and the passing cars,
about this atmosphere of rain, these dead bodies
on television,
look-out calls of crows, sirens
of ambulances,
nobody tells us anything for sure.

The little bar burnt out, the woman
embracing her Dobermann
in the shelter of the gateway there –
the bad or good in them –
we have lost the power to gauge it.

Faces, broken bottles, branches in flower:
the sea in which we’re swimming
pours
into our eyes without end.

And yet when they call out to me
I still turn round – you see?
and make an answer.

Here I Am

About the puff of dust that rises
between the forsythias and the passing cars,
about this atmosphere of rain, these dead bodies
on television,
look-out calls of crows, sirens
of ambulances,
nobody tells us anything for sure.

The little bar burnt out, the woman
embracing her Dobermann
in the shelter of the gateway there –
the bad or good in them –
we have lost the power to gauge it.

Faces, broken bottles, branches in flower:
the sea in which we’re swimming
pours
into our eyes without end.

And yet when they call out to me
I still turn round – you see?
and make an answer.
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Prins Bernhard cultuurfonds
Lira fonds
Partners
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère