Saturday, June 7, 2014

The Sleeper in the Vale


By Arthur Rimbaud. Translated from the French by Olivia Faix. Use only with permission. The original, "Le dormeur du val," was written in October 1870.

The Sleeper in the Vale

It's a pocket of greenery where a stream sings,
Madly catching on the grass its rags
Of silver; where the sun, from the proud mountain,
Shines: it's a small vale that is bubbling with rays of light.

A young soldier, mouth open, head bare,
And the nape of his neck bathing in cool blue cress,
Sleeps; he is stretched out on the grass, under the skies,
Pale in his green bed where the light rains.

His feet in the gladioli, he sleeps. Smiling like
A sick child smiles, he is dozing:
Nature, cradle him warmly: he is cold.

The scents do not make his nostrils quiver;
He sleeps in the sun, his hand on his chest,
Peaceful. There are two red holes in his right side.

Can We Do This All Year?

I wrote this on 7/30/13, and had forgotten all about it. This little snippet captures my feelings about summer so very well, and I think it's a great example of my voice. Finding this in my drafts feels like unearthing a small treasure that I forgot I had buried. :)



Playing with the fireflies that swim all around me. They leap and dive and shimmer as I swing through the air that is at once relaxed and heavy with the expectation of something beautiful about to happen. Because beauty is all around us. Overhead the stars sing melodies to the sky while a plane sails by and leaves a string of cloud like a kitetail that glows raspberry and orange in the post-sunset atmosphere.

I never feel as alive as I do in the summer, and I just have one question:

Can we do this all year long? I would be happy as a clam in harbor if I could just come out here every night, and play with the fireflies and sing with the stars.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Right Here

Someone had the nifty idea to try to write 30 poems in the month of June, one for each day. Here's my first one.


With my toes in the sand and my eyes on the stars,
I stared up into the vacancy.
Your love echoed down to the ground all around me,
Your voice in the wind that I could not see.

I stood there wanting it all to become clear:
My heart open, my hands outstretched.
But instead I found that there's life to be found
Right here in the beautiful mess.