Poems by Hadassa Tal, translated by Joanna Chen
Oh days of innocence under dazzling sun
once I loaned a lupine from the bees
The saddest of lemon trees spring from tears
on a leaf of paper a songbird
blinds letters that dance her to the bough-tip
all is you, crushing the silence.
i run barefoot along a strip of sand,
under an umbrella of cloud.
the even lakes speak tears that hide you
grief gripping my temple like a loaded gun
Why. the most ancient assemblage of cadence
at that moment I was no more than a plundered wing.
every night besieged by barn owls. imitating death.
and the world encircled it, obeying the power of weakness
stars burn above the dome of thought
the night vine eats her grapes nipple by nipple
returning the power of solace to earth
once the word was an ear of corn
was a body
a girl running in a field innocent of words
like gamblers addicted to the light,
tossed on tiles. illuminated
you are revealed
as one who touched
Lord, the apple of your eye throbs unrestrained
I searched far, teetering on despair, daunted by distance,
(no one said if there is up or down) —
yes, I know what I find is not what I lost,
but must remember
not to let the light
drift between my fingers
Be seated. Be Silent.
Let her scatter your blood, the fine lines
of your face. Let her be the feather that flutters
your heart, free within and out, from speech
or silence. Let the bitter rise on the slopes of sunrise mount.
Let the taste of storm