Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Lêdo Ivo

STEAM SHOVEL

All silence troubles me.
There’s always something it leaves out:
a treason plotted amongst wisterias
the final explanation of the existence or the inexistence of God
the sound of rats in the rubbish
the clash of propeller and wind at the abandoned airport.
But morning bursts forth at the work site and I hear the noise of the steam shovel.
Men have already awakened and returned to their construction and destruction.
They’re going to build new houses and new tombs.

In the sunny morning, the Beatle comes to a stop in the motel alley.
Once again penis and vagina will try to understand each other
in this world so filled with failed encounters.
The steam shovel shovels and the caterpillar treads advance in the crater open like a flower.
Seen by the conductor’s sleepy eyes as the bus goes down the avenue, the world as spectacle.

DE GRAAFMACHINE

Elke stilte hindert mij.
Zij laat altijd iets weg:
een verraad, beraamd tussen de blauweregens
de definitieve uitleg over het bestaan of niet-bestaan van God
het scharrelen van muizen in het afval
de botsing tussen de propeller en de wind op het niet meer gebruikte
         vliegveld.
Maar de ochtend valt over de afgraving, ik hoor de herrie van de
         graagmachine.
De mannen zijn al op, ze werken alweer aan constructie en destructie.
Ze gaan nieuwe huizen maken en nieuwe graven.
 
Op de zonovergoten ochtend stopt de vw opzij van het motel.
Weer een keer gaan penis en vagina straks proberen elkaar te verstaan
op deze wereld van zo vele misverstanden.
De graafmachine graaft en trekt zijn voren in de krater die zich opent
        als een bloemkroon.
In de slaperige ogen van de centenvanger op de bus over de boulevard
is deze wereld een vertoning.

A ESCAVADEIRA

Todo silêncio me incomoda.
Ele sempre omite alguma coisa:
uma traição tramada entre as glicínias
a explicação final sobre a existência ou a inexistência de Deus
o rumor dos ratos no entulho
o choque entre a hélice e o vento no aeroporto desativado.
Mas a manhã irrompe no canteiro de obras e ouço o barulho da escavadeira.
Os homens já acordaram e voltaram a construer e a destruir.
Vão fazer novas casas e novov túmulos.

Na manhã de sol o fusca pára no oitão do motel.
Mais uma vez pênis e vagina vão tenar entender-se
neste mundo de tantos descencontros.
A escavadeira escava e as esteiras avançam na cratera aberta como uma corola.
Visto pelo olhos sonolentos do trocador de ônibus que passa pela
avenida o mundo é uma representação.
Close

STEAM SHOVEL

All silence troubles me.
There’s always something it leaves out:
a treason plotted amongst wisterias
the final explanation of the existence or the inexistence of God
the sound of rats in the rubbish
the clash of propeller and wind at the abandoned airport.
But morning bursts forth at the work site and I hear the noise of the steam shovel.
Men have already awakened and returned to their construction and destruction.
They’re going to build new houses and new tombs.

In the sunny morning, the Beatle comes to a stop in the motel alley.
Once again penis and vagina will try to understand each other
in this world so filled with failed encounters.
The steam shovel shovels and the caterpillar treads advance in the crater open like a flower.
Seen by the conductor’s sleepy eyes as the bus goes down the avenue, the world as spectacle.

STEAM SHOVEL

All silence troubles me.
There’s always something it leaves out:
a treason plotted amongst wisterias
the final explanation of the existence or the inexistence of God
the sound of rats in the rubbish
the clash of propeller and wind at the abandoned airport.
But morning bursts forth at the work site and I hear the noise of the steam shovel.
Men have already awakened and returned to their construction and destruction.
They’re going to build new houses and new tombs.

In the sunny morning, the Beatle comes to a stop in the motel alley.
Once again penis and vagina will try to understand each other
in this world so filled with failed encounters.
The steam shovel shovels and the caterpillar treads advance in the crater open like a flower.
Seen by the conductor’s sleepy eyes as the bus goes down the avenue, the world as spectacle.
Sponsors
Gemeente Rotterdam
Nederlands Letterenfonds
Stichting Van Beuningen Peterich-fonds
Ludo Pieters Gastschrijver Fonds
Hendrik Muller fonds
Lira fonds
J.E. Jurriaanse
Literature Translation Institute of Korea
Partners
LantarenVenster – Verhalenhuis Belvédère