Translation Chantal Wright
Un-lost in translation
The window at the front and right of my compartment
reflects the scene on the left at my rear.
I can see what is passing superimposed on
what is coming, and it is as though the light
likes this game, irrespective of where the sun is,
or where the train is heading.
By the sea in Heiligendamm
in June, the water, gigantic,
silver, eats up skin and
spits out naked bodies.
Between the lakes, to the north,
the sun yields of its own volition,
the way only the south can yield,
the birches darken in amazement.
By the river, to the east,
pearls ripen in fig hearts,
and the pebbles shine.
—that dirty word—
the fences and the shores.
Wheels and people cross over me
my arms and legs are outstretched
nails dug into sand dunes
my vertebrae do not crack
I cannot see who is crossing
my face stares into water: Siddharta’s river
Originals © Tzveta Sofronieva
Translations © Chantal Wright