The Sonata of the Delirious Forget-me-not
A lake beyond silver birches. Straw has turned to stone in the hayloft.
Here is a whirl of captured faces. Does death bother them?
The girl covers her face with her hair, with a toss of her head
(the whispering voice mixes with the sobbing of the choir),
all in goose-bumps she lightens up her stony gaze.
Something has snapped. Hands clasped in prayer.
She spirals away among dandelion down,
floating on foetal water against forgetfulness.
Beyond the lake the forest meditates. Only emptiness bothers it,
carried over from before conception. It slumps from consciousness
into unconsciousness, from which something different overflows.
(It is as if crags have reared up in the distance. At the sea's edge.
Above the foaming waves woolpacks sail by,
but they have disappeared together with the rocky mainland.)
At the moment the pendulum stops in the clock,
the old people's home is filled with the same old melody.
Beyond the forest a small cloud ruffles the azure. A dejected fool
describes a circle with his steps. His head does not hurt from the path,
although he rests his brow upon it. Space and time fade away
(he himself is dallying with a charming crippled woman,
and the trembling of her tongue pervades his body).
Villains who are transfixed with worries are hardly able to honour
the crystal-clear spring. As if in a clearing
the godless woman has put down her little pack. And chicory never forgets.
Falling off one's feet. In a limpid but spiritless spirit
there is a loner on a cross. Like a rose of nightingale's blood.
Consumption has carried off the lady, and in the same way beside her remains
a young widow lies dying. Instead of a bouquet there are wilted camellias.
(The light of the Fates wanders up and down a stem. Closed eyelids.
With the perfume of carnations and light-blue eyes they make the bed.
Delirium? In the new dimension of coitus. Open mouths.)
Above the castle, bats use the clouds to uncover the moon.
Stiffening of hands. An old woman remembers the dead lover
who danced at her wedding. Her love still has the fragrance of an avenue of trees.
(The board fence has a single post. It shrieks hauntingly of wood.
He trembles when a dahlia undresses him. Which one is he in the series?
Below a blossoming apple-tree he is laid to rest in downy petals.
Things remain unspoken in the connection. When it rains, who cries?)
A boy licks the foot of an armless statue of a woman
with wrinkles, so that he can lie down next to her, curled up in a ball, in the coffin.
Without feeling. The muse goes on nodding, as if nothing has happened.
On the false bottom there sometimes remain traces of flowers
(a drop of the drug makes the seed groan among the flower-pots).
A scarf wet from the spring. So that they do not forget
its little greasy knot, it waves to the perverts and the fugitives.
And the same music is all the more intensive for the event
that happened just as it was playing – a bizarre sonata.
In a clear solution: what is absolved? The forget-me-not waits.
The heart outside the chest. When madness enraptures the crowd,
its trance ripples with the orgasms of women gone wild.
(A drunkard on a bench like a child in its mother's lap.
An invisible hand, when it is the only thing to be relied on,
does not transcend its origin. Can we not also find pleasure
in helplessness, if another hand is already grasped within it?)
God is only the desire to stymie death. A lady crouches
and gazes hypnotically through a smoke-ring, thinking it might contain him.
Gasping for breath. After a false diagnosis nothing happens.
And a proud breed transformed into an army.
Someone feasts his eyes on a venus in a peony costume
(from her drips a net in which coitus has overtaken love),
and over this white flesh a coin sadly rolls
(a musical jewellery box, when playing, absorbs hallucinogenics).
The wick of bast rejoices. A being as the desire for eternal paradise.
Among the tones, a human being. The fool cannot get out of the circle.
He falls into the deepest, oldest essence of things, where he and nothingness
mingle. Why can he not at least once get an inkling of something there?
(When the cactus flowers, the desert sends out a warning signal.
Everything is cursed. When the clock stops in the old people's home,
the memory of the lover turns to straw.)
Among the grass stalks a light-blue flower burns out:
I will turn to ash, dust more dead than death
extracted from the gums of God, and... everything is different anyway.
Tranlated from the Slovak by Andrew Billingham