Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Raúl Zurita

All of that is in you

the sky, the fire, the earth,
the sun, the planets



the water, the air. Or we are all that or all is a mirage. The morning cool and the dew, the light of the tempest and fear of the small beetle scurrying in the sand, the grain of wind among the pivots of piers, and the waves of the sea . . .
Look like this at my bent legs, my arched arms. The knot of my hands twisting over the oars: they are all men rowing with us; all sunrises, the madness of those skies seeing each the other, the noise that already before had been lodged in our life when it unfastened itself that first filament from the stars.
Or we are all of that and all is a dream: the currents bloated of cities, of floats, of peoples who our cheeks struck went on scoring, that our shoulders, that our inseparable mouths went on scoring (stuck like the sea, like the air, like the breakers that were born together). Or we are all the voices or it is only the air that speaks . . . the hurricane that goes mad the surface of the lakes and the snap of the breastbone in the heavy seas, the brightness of your eyes crossed with mine, the lightning, the rain, rivers that overflow . . .
Love that overflows itself, the light, the great myths that we were sewn (snared, sewn like a scarf that strangles us).
Look then at the curve of my back, the warp of nerves that go on making my framework to my fingertips, to my fingers stiff against my ribs. We are that saga then of history: the drift of veins that rivers prolong to the universe flesh. Yes, my voice that is all the voices and your continent.
The wild emigrations of birds and the celeste of the flower opening itself in its bud, the instantaneous silence of the spider in its web, the red palpitation of fish and that tumultuous point we cross together.
Or we are that or nothing; the flake frozen over grass and leaves moved by the wind (countries, forced marches, armies ruined, cities that don’t exist anymore, they are they who whistle with leaves).
The breath, the bellows of my chest bending over toward the indomitable territories I sing: the Pacific. It is yours then the song of the furies, of unknown icebergs, of the throng of first men whose names were Adam and first women whose names were Eve when mud, when the love immobilized in the stone answered the voice: “walk,” and of love for the landscapes they got up from mud like sails walking with us.
Listen then to the noise of the torrents opening themselves up in the wind: they are the images that belong to you, incarnations that were born with you, sounds, rivers of the dream that is mine and that you dreamed in a sky like this.
On a day like this one in which I finish this poem speaking with you. 18 years ago the millennium began. Outside it’s night and the clouds cut against a few stars.

Dat alles is in jou

de hemel, het vuur, de aarde,
de zon, de planeten


het water, de lucht. Of wij zijn dat alles of alles is een luchtspiegeling. De koelte van de ochtend en de dauw, het licht van de storm en de angst van het kleine kevertje dat uitglijdt in het zand, het krassen van de wind tussen de palen van de steigers, de golven van de oceaan . . .
Kijk naar mijn gebogen benen, mijn gekromde armen, de knoop van mijn handen die om de riemen draaien: het zijn alle mannen die met ons mee roeien; alle ochtendstonden, de waanzin van de half geziene hemels, de ruis die ons leven al eerder had ondergebracht toen het eerste filament van sterren zich losmaakte.
Of wij zijn dat alles of alles is een droom: de stromen aangezwollen met steden, met vloten, met mensen die onze geslagen wangen doorkliefden, die onze schouders, die onze onafscheidelijke monden doorkliefden (verkleefd als de zee, als de lucht, als twee riffen die samen waren ontstaan).
Of wij zijn alle stemmen of het is alleen de lucht die spreekt . . . de orkaan die het oppervlak van meren tot waanzin drijft en het kraken van de kiel in de hoge golven, de glans in je ogen die de mijne kruisen, de bliksem, de regen, de rivieren die overstromen . . .
De liefde die overstroomt, het licht, de grote mythen waar we in geweven zijn (verstrikt, verweven als een sjaal die ons wurgt).
Kijk dan naar de bolling van mijn rug, de schering van zenuwen die zich in elkaar vlechten tot aan de vingertoppen, tot aan de verkrampte vingers tegen de spanten. Wij zijn dan die sage en het verhaal: de vertakkende aders die de rivieren hebben uitgerekt tot in het vlees van de wereld. Ja, mijn stem die alle stemmen is en jouw continent.
De wilde vogelmigraties en het lichtblauw van de bloem die in haar knop opengaat, de ogenblikkelijke stilte van de spin in haar web, de rood fladderende vissen en de woeste baren die we samen overstaken.
Of wij zijn dat alles of niets; het ijskristal op het gras en de bladeren die in de wind bewogen (landen, gedwongen marsen, verwoeste legers, steden die niet meer bestaan, zijn degenen die zich fluitend tussen de bladeren begeven).
De ademtocht, de blaasbalg in mijn borst helt over naar de onbedwingbare streken die ik bezing: de Stille Zuidzee. Van jou is dus het gezang van de furiën, de onbekende ijsschotsen, de menigte van eerste mannen die Adam heetten en eerste vrouwen die Eva heetten toen de modder, toen de liefde op de steen gestold de stem antwoordde: “loop,” en uit liefde verhieven de landschappen zich uit de modder als zeilen die met ons meeliepen.
Luister dan naar de murmelende stromen die opengaan in de wind: het zijn beelden die jou toebehoren, incarnaties die met jou zijn ontstaan, geluiden, rivieren uit de droom die van mij is en die jij droomde in een hemel zoals deze.
Op een dag zoals deze waarop ik dit gedicht voltooi door tegen je te praten. 18 jaar geleden is het millennium begonnen. Buiten is het nacht en de wolken knippen wat sterren uit.

Todo eso está en ti

el cielo, el fuego, la tierra,
el sol, los planetas



el agua, el aire. O somos todo eso o todo es un espejismo. El fresco de la mañana y el rocío, la luz de la tempestad y el temor del pequeño escarabajo escurriéndose en la arena, el graznido del viento entre los pivotes de los muelles, las ondas del océano . . .
Mira así mis piernas flectadas, mis arqueados brazos. el nudo de mis manos torciéndose sobre los remos: son todos los hombres bogando con nosotros; todos los amaneceres, la locura de los cielos entrevistos, el rumor que ya antes había alojado a nuestra vida cuando se desprendió el primer filamento de las estrellas.
O somos todo eso o todo es un sueño: las corrientes henchidas de ciudades, de flotas, de gentes que nuestras mejillas pegadas fueron surcando, que nuestros hombros, que nuestras inseparables bocas fueron surcando (adheridas como el mar, como el aire, como dos rompientes que nacieron juntas).
O somos todas las voces o es sólo el aire el que habla . . . el huracán que enloquece la superficie de los lagos y el crujido de las quillas en la marejada, el fulgor de tus ojos cruzados con los míos, el relámpago, la lluvia, los ríos que se desbordan . . .
El amor que se desborda, la luz, los grandes mitos en que fuimos tejidos (entrampados, tejidos como una bufanda que nos estrangula).
Mira entonces la curva de mi espalda, la urdiembre de nervios que se van entramando hasta las yemas, hasta los dedos crispados contra las cuadernas. Somos nosotros esa saga entonces y la historia: la deriva de venas que los ríos prolongaron a la carne del universo. Sí, mi voz que es todas las voces y tu continente.
Las salvajes emigraciones de los pájaros y el celeste de la flor abriéndose en su capullo, el instantáneo silencio de la araña en su red, el aleteo rojo de los peces y ese ponto tumultuoso que cruzamos juntos.
O somos todo eso o nada; el copo helado sobre la hierba y las hojas movidas por el viento (países, marchas forzadas, ejércitos destruidos, ciudades que ya no existen, son los que pasan silbando entre las hojas).
El aliento, el fuelle de mi pecho inclinándose hacia los territorios indomables que canto: el Pacífico. Es tuyo entonces el canto de las furias, de los témpanos desconocidos, de la muchedumbre de primeros hombres que se llamaron Adán y de primeras mujeres que se llamaron Eva cuando el barro, cuando el amor inmovilizado en la piedra respondió a la voz: “camina”, y de amor los paisajes se levantaron del barro como velámenes caminando con nosotros.
Escucha entonces el rumor de los torrentes abriéndose en el viento: son imágenes que te pertenecen, encarnaciones que nacieron contigo, sonidos, ríos del sueño que es mío y que tú soñaste en un cielo como éste.
En un día como éste en que termino este poema hablándote. Hace 18 años comenzó el milenio. Afuera es de noche y las nubes recortan algunas estrellas.
Close

All of that is in you

the sky, the fire, the earth,
the sun, the planets



the water, the air. Or we are all that or all is a mirage. The morning cool and the dew, the light of the tempest and fear of the small beetle scurrying in the sand, the grain of wind among the pivots of piers, and the waves of the sea . . .
Look like this at my bent legs, my arched arms. The knot of my hands twisting over the oars: they are all men rowing with us; all sunrises, the madness of those skies seeing each the other, the noise that already before had been lodged in our life when it unfastened itself that first filament from the stars.
Or we are all of that and all is a dream: the currents bloated of cities, of floats, of peoples who our cheeks struck went on scoring, that our shoulders, that our inseparable mouths went on scoring (stuck like the sea, like the air, like the breakers that were born together). Or we are all the voices or it is only the air that speaks . . . the hurricane that goes mad the surface of the lakes and the snap of the breastbone in the heavy seas, the brightness of your eyes crossed with mine, the lightning, the rain, rivers that overflow . . .
Love that overflows itself, the light, the great myths that we were sewn (snared, sewn like a scarf that strangles us).
Look then at the curve of my back, the warp of nerves that go on making my framework to my fingertips, to my fingers stiff against my ribs. We are that saga then of history: the drift of veins that rivers prolong to the universe flesh. Yes, my voice that is all the voices and your continent.
The wild emigrations of birds and the celeste of the flower opening itself in its bud, the instantaneous silence of the spider in its web, the red palpitation of fish and that tumultuous point we cross together.
Or we are that or nothing; the flake frozen over grass and leaves moved by the wind (countries, forced marches, armies ruined, cities that don’t exist anymore, they are they who whistle with leaves).
The breath, the bellows of my chest bending over toward the indomitable territories I sing: the Pacific. It is yours then the song of the furies, of unknown icebergs, of the throng of first men whose names were Adam and first women whose names were Eve when mud, when the love immobilized in the stone answered the voice: “walk,” and of love for the landscapes they got up from mud like sails walking with us.
Listen then to the noise of the torrents opening themselves up in the wind: they are the images that belong to you, incarnations that were born with you, sounds, rivers of the dream that is mine and that you dreamed in a sky like this.
On a day like this one in which I finish this poem speaking with you. 18 years ago the millennium began. Outside it’s night and the clouds cut against a few stars.

All of that is in you

the sky, the fire, the earth,
the sun, the planets



the water, the air. Or we are all that or all is a mirage. The morning cool and the dew, the light of the tempest and fear of the small beetle scurrying in the sand, the grain of wind among the pivots of piers, and the waves of the sea . . .
Look like this at my bent legs, my arched arms. The knot of my hands twisting over the oars: they are all men rowing with us; all sunrises, the madness of those skies seeing each the other, the noise that already before had been lodged in our life when it unfastened itself that first filament from the stars.
Or we are all of that and all is a dream: the currents bloated of cities, of floats, of peoples who our cheeks struck went on scoring, that our shoulders, that our inseparable mouths went on scoring (stuck like the sea, like the air, like the breakers that were born together). Or we are all the voices or it is only the air that speaks . . . the hurricane that goes mad the surface of the lakes and the snap of the breastbone in the heavy seas, the brightness of your eyes crossed with mine, the lightning, the rain, rivers that overflow . . .
Love that overflows itself, the light, the great myths that we were sewn (snared, sewn like a scarf that strangles us).
Look then at the curve of my back, the warp of nerves that go on making my framework to my fingertips, to my fingers stiff against my ribs. We are that saga then of history: the drift of veins that rivers prolong to the universe flesh. Yes, my voice that is all the voices and your continent.
The wild emigrations of birds and the celeste of the flower opening itself in its bud, the instantaneous silence of the spider in its web, the red palpitation of fish and that tumultuous point we cross together.
Or we are that or nothing; the flake frozen over grass and leaves moved by the wind (countries, forced marches, armies ruined, cities that don’t exist anymore, they are they who whistle with leaves).
The breath, the bellows of my chest bending over toward the indomitable territories I sing: the Pacific. It is yours then the song of the furies, of unknown icebergs, of the throng of first men whose names were Adam and first women whose names were Eve when mud, when the love immobilized in the stone answered the voice: “walk,” and of love for the landscapes they got up from mud like sails walking with us.
Listen then to the noise of the torrents opening themselves up in the wind: they are the images that belong to you, incarnations that were born with you, sounds, rivers of the dream that is mine and that you dreamed in a sky like this.
On a day like this one in which I finish this poem speaking with you. 18 years ago the millennium began. Outside it’s night and the clouds cut against a few stars.
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