Poetry International Poetry International
Poem

Eli Eliahu

INHERITANCE

I can’t teach you anything. What can I know
about this life we live only once, and cannot
retrace our steps. I don’t know where the soul comes from
and how flesh was created. I don’t know if there is punishment
or reward. I can’t reject even the most superstitious
of beliefs. I don’t know if a person chooses
his destiny or if he is reincarnated into another body.
I can’t know if the other is anything but a second
look at myself. I don’t know if it is I who
move in time or if it is time which moves in me. I can’t teach
you anything about the world, my daughter. This is your inheritance.

ירושה

ירושה

אֵינִי יָכוֹל לְלַמֵּד אוֹתָךְ דָּבָר. מַה יָכֹל לָדַעַת
עַל חַיָּיו מִי שֶׁחַי פַּעַם אַחַת, וְאֵינוֹ יָכוֹל לָשׁוּב
עַל עִקְּבוֹתָיו. אֵינֶנִּי יוֹדֵעַ מִנַּיִן מַגִּיעָה הַנְּשָׁמָה
וְאֵיךְ נוֹצַר הַבָּשָׂר. אֵינֶנִּי יוֹדֵעַ אִם יֵשׁ עֹנֶשׁ
אוֹ שָׂכָר. אֵינֶנִּי יָכֹל לִפְסֹל אֲפִלּוּ אֶת הָאֱמוּנוֹת
הַתְּפֵלוֹת בְּיוֹתֵר. אֵינֶנִּי יוֹדֵעַ אִם אָדָם בּוֹחֵר
אֶת גּוֹרָלוֹ, אוֹ אִם הוּא מִתְגַּלְגֵּל בְּגוּף אַחֵר.
אֵינֶנִּי יָכוֹל לָדַעַת אִם הַזּוּלַת אֵינוֹ אֶלָּא מַבָּט
שני שֶׁל הָאֲנִי. אֵינֶנִּי יוֹדֵעַ אִם אֲנִי הוּא
שֶׁנָּע בַּזְּמַן אוֹ שֶׁהַזְּמַן נָע בִּי. אֵינִי יָכוֹל לְלַמֵּד
אוֹתָךְ דָּבָר עַל הָעוֹלָם, בִּתִּי. זוֹ יְרֻשָּׁתִי.
 
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INHERITANCE

I can’t teach you anything. What can I know
about this life we live only once, and cannot
retrace our steps. I don’t know where the soul comes from
and how flesh was created. I don’t know if there is punishment
or reward. I can’t reject even the most superstitious
of beliefs. I don’t know if a person chooses
his destiny or if he is reincarnated into another body.
I can’t know if the other is anything but a second
look at myself. I don’t know if it is I who
move in time or if it is time which moves in me. I can’t teach
you anything about the world, my daughter. This is your inheritance.

INHERITANCE

I can’t teach you anything. What can I know
about this life we live only once, and cannot
retrace our steps. I don’t know where the soul comes from
and how flesh was created. I don’t know if there is punishment
or reward. I can’t reject even the most superstitious
of beliefs. I don’t know if a person chooses
his destiny or if he is reincarnated into another body.
I can’t know if the other is anything but a second
look at myself. I don’t know if it is I who
move in time or if it is time which moves in me. I can’t teach
you anything about the world, my daughter. This is your inheritance.
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