“The golden age of love”

My hands are in love,
alas, my mouth loves –
and see, I am suddenly aware
that things are so close to me
I can hardly walk among them
without suffering.

It is a sweet feeling
of waking, of dreaming,
and I am here now, without sleep –
I clearly see the ivory gods,
I take them in my hands and
thrust them, laughing, in the moon
up to their sculpted hilts –
the wheel of an ancient ship, adorned
and spun by sailors.

Jupiter is yellow, Hera
the magnificent shades to silver.
I strike the wheel with my left hand and it moves.
It is a dance of sentiments, my love,
many a goddess of the air, between the two of us.
And I, the sail of my soul
billowed with longing,
look for you everywhere, and things come
ever closer,
crowding my chest, hurting me.

By Nichita Stanescu

From the book “Bas-Relief with Heroes”
english translation by Thomas Carlson and Vasile Poenaru.

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