[Image: “Le Petit Prince,” by user Xava du on Flickr. (Used here under a Creative Commons license.) The Spanish caption provided by the photographer: Cuando el misterio es demasiado impresionante, es imposible desobedecer; the English translation of this passage (originally in French) from Saint-Exupery’s The Little Prince is usually rendered as When a mystery is too overpowering, one dare not disobey.]
From whiskey river:
All Hallows’ Eve
In the great silence of my favorite month,
October (the red of maples, the bronze of oaks,
A clear-yellow leaf here and there on birches),
I celebrated the standstill of time.
The vast country of the dead had its beginning everywhere:
At the turn of a tree-lined alley, across park lawns.
But I did not have to enter, I was not called yet.
Motorboats pulled up on the river bank, paths in pine needles.
It was getting dark early, no lights on the other side.
I was going to attend the ball of ghosts and witches.
A delegation would appear there in masks and wigs,
And dance, unrecognized, in the chorus of the living.
(Czesaw Milosz [source])
As the falling rain
trickles among the stones
memories come bubbling out.
It’s as if the rain
had pierced my temples.
the reedy voice
of the servant
telling me tales
They sat beside me
and the bed creaked
that purple-dark afternoon
when I learned you were leaving forever,
a gleaming pebble
from constant rubbing
becomes a comet.
Rain is falling
and memories keep flooding by
they show me a senseless
but I keep loving it
because I do
because of my five senses
because of my amazement
because every morning,
because forever, I have loved it
without knowing why.
(Claribel Alegría, translated by Margaret Sayers Peden [source])