Wednesday, July 16, 2014


A Berceuse is a lullaby. I thought this was a peaceful landscape to go with a lullaby; it is an after-the-rain -photograph of the south shore of Lake Superior late last year. You might sing a lullaby to a child. Or you might fade into sleep singing one to yourself. There are things about this translation that I would like to compare with the Swedish, but sadly, this volume leaves out the original language. The original language is which a poem was written is always interesting to look at when printed in our familiar alphabet. There are cognates and correspondences in both Germanic and Romance languages that may inspire interesting lines of thought, or poems of your own. We plan to take off tomorrow morning, and pick up some extra medicine for the one remaining dachshund, Cassandra, on the way out of town.


I am a mummy at rest in the blue coffin of the trees,
in the perpetual soughing of cars and rubber and asphalt.

What happens during the day submerges, the lessons
      are heavier than life.

The wheelbarrow rolled out on its single wheel and I
travelled forward on my own whirring psyche, but now
      my thoughts have ceased going round and the
      wheelbarrow has acquired wings.

At long last, when space has turned black, an aeroplane
will come. The passengers will see cities underneath
      them glittering with Gothic gold.

Tomas Transtromer from Inspired Notes; 
Poems of Tomas Transtromer, translated by John F. Deane, Dedalus Press, 2011, page 49.

PS: I have to look up the pronunciation of sough and soughing every time I seem them. Sigh, soughing,

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