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Appearance of God

God appears
as a bunny of light
in the eye of a child.

God appears
as a nest of a swallow
in a new house.

God appears
as a painful wound
on a pure body.

God appears
from everywhere
in everyone.

Appearance of God (II)

God appears
as a leaf
on a quiet water.

More obedient
than the clay
you step on.

Easier than
the adieu kiss
on the forehead of a dead man.

God
is easier to keep
than to banish.


Appearance of God (III)

As a brave man
killed in no battle.

As a lizard
of light.

As a city
which crumbles.

Like this is the soul of the one
who saw God.


Appearance of God (IV)

As a squirrel
in one’s childhood.

As a whisper
in the darkness.

As a glow worm
near the path.

As a fish which springs
before the fisher.

So God passes
before one’s mind.


Appearance of God (V)

As a night
without stars.

As an incomprehensible
word.

As a cheek
without no other cheek.
As a kiss
without the kisser.

So is the soul
of the one who has no
God.


Appearance of God (VI)

He is like a tomb
which shadows you
from the heights.


Appearance of God (VII)

God is
as a sand of warm
which crumbles inside you

and as a song
which softly wounds
the lips of the singer.

As a wound
which deepens forever
and forever heals,

around which
we, humans, gather
like flies.


Appearance of God (VIII)

The soul who met
God
is like the first snow
falling on an unexplored
glade.

Like a moment
which supports two
temples

and like a word
you can carry with your hand.

The soul who met
God
is like a cry of joy
over the valleys.

The dead and the ancient
gather around him like roes
and they look and, rejoicing,
they drink.

Oh, he is like a handful of
dust
you cast upon
the beloved man.


Appearance of God (IX)

The passionate soul
Is like a mad mole
Which routs the gardens of the body.

And like a dumb stag
which walks alone
in night.

Sadness is his grass
and his sun spreads
madness.

Animals of light rip
his nights,
but they also dissipate
like dandelions in a storm.


This one drowses like a hen on the
fence
until death comes and takes him,
and carries him with her, sleeping.

Oh, my poor soul
how many times you escaped
from the arms of death,
running like a wild boar of fire!

Your wounds dripped the light,
wounding the darkness, as if
you became for a while
very,
very old,
when they had no blood, but
light.


Appearance of God (X)

Blessed be the one who died
and resurrected.

Because he saw death
falling drunkenly upon
the sky
and the fear dripping
from the stars, like wax.

That he saw his soul
trembling in the air
like a kite
held by the hand of a dead.

Blessed be he who saw
his whole life
as a shirt forgot in the
grass.

That he does not value
human thoughts,
which, like some cow dung
beads
coming out of a dead goat,
leave us in
the moment of a bitter certainty.


Death knows him
and he knows death,
and he knows the houses and the places
she haunts.

The King of Light Himself
found him, as
he was lying breathless,
and washed his wounds with
light,
and gave him o eat
the honeycombs of wisdom.

In time, light
peeled the wound

and wisdom became
a knife in his hands
with which he cut himself
to the bone.

But he is happy,
because in his moments
of silence
upon the waters of his soul
the image of our
Merciful Emperor rises
as a lotus of hope
as a promise of love.


Burial Song

Grieve yourself
and recall your own heart.

Listen to its beats
resembling to the town clock,
a town whose only inhabitant
is but you alone.

Run to the field with crows

Yes, he may detach himself of
his own mind
as of a ball,
as of a lonely eave
at sunset.

Lonely, like a stranger, always on the run
with the heart torn and na?ve
thinking that all crows
are 300 years old,
although he cannot remember
who made him
believe it.

Every day he flies over
these ephemeral and vain
things,
over his own thoughts, such
thoughts
which are so strange to him
like the rest of the world.

Oh, how he would run and mix
in the bustle of crows on the ploughed
field,
but no, not for the 300 years
people say these creatures may live. Not
for that.
Now he is no longer tormented
by such a wish. He learnt,
he learnt that from now on, he’s immortal. That
he,
the one so much tormented
by death,
is immortal. He believed and knew it.
In fact, he had no other
choice!


But still, these black and strange
birds
attracted him in many ways.

Thirst for Anonymity

The thought of death
like a cockchafer
disturbing the evenings of May,

like a bird or like a ram
striking the gate of soul.

Sometimes you would like
to sink into anonymity
as the sack with puppies
sentenced to death,
without noise.

Exile and laurels.
Untimely Death

Your children will be born
by other parents,
at least
for a while.

And life like an animal
hurt on the road
will limp
till sunset.

Oh, who are you
and whom is your soul
troubled for

’cause I saw you
by the eye of a running beast,
climbing up the street.


Death

Death like a gardener:
waters the roots of eyes
and digs the hollows of ears,

and adorns
the stems of lips,

and coats the fingers
with the rings of virtues

and embellishes
the breast with coats of mail
made of light

and puts on feet
the sandals of purity

and builds the neck like a tower
adorned all around
with the windows of wisdom.

Only Death,
as an old and faithful servant,
knows the secrets and the tastes
of the Emperor.

Only Death,
as a secret counselor,
knows the place where the chest is hidden.

She knows the ins and outs,
and the most secret doors.

Oh, her old
and faithful hands
melt like wax
while fixing our collars
and our hair,

until there is nobody
in the room,
except ourselves,
flabbergasted,
as facing a great danger.

Migration of the Saints

Night by night
the One they think they are waiting for
gives them eyes to see in the darkness
and feet of light
which they step as quietly as stags with.

They go unseen to
us,
to the land promised to them.

Oh, yes, they do not avoid even that river
of sadness
many of them thought of
in their moments of bitter certainty.

With those feet of light
they stand fixed like deer
in the bank of sadness
and drink, as they cannot drink.


This is everyone’s part.

You can see them night by night,
coming from everywhere

They carry their own bodies in their arms,
and them throw them
into the holy waters,
like crowns with flowers
made for their Predestined Husband.

Oh, their steps of light,
happy steps, as the steps of the
newborn lambs,
walk on the rotten roofs
of night.

Maybe somewhere,
in a poor town,
in a common town,
a lonely soul,
a common soul,
with a common past,
feels their steps on his face
on his chest, and perhaps, on his heart.
Gentle, like kisses.


The Stag
To my Atheist Father, with Love


Once, I fed with milk
a wild bunny
and I spent the day with him,
and in the night I sheltered him
in a box with rags
and I protected him from the greedy eyes
of cats.

I spent a second day,
and a third day with him.
and so I spent my childish
love
until one day,
when he died.

My father brought him to me,
telling he found him under a bush.

Another time, he brought me
a deer cub
and I stuck my soul
on her,
and we spent together
days and days,
although I knew she will die.
And she died.

As a child I was so much fascinated
by wild animals,
so, many times,
I went to look for them
on the hills and in the woods.
And, sometimes, I happened
to see them.

Once, I remember,
my father came home
and told he saw a stag
with huge antlers.
Of course, I trusted him,
although I demanded no proof.

Later, he also told me
there is no God
and I trusted him.

I wandered all my life
walking among humans
as they were trees,
thinking only to rare animals,
as the former child,
although this time I did not know exactly
what I was looking for.

It was then I saw You,
oh, God,
oh, my stag of fire
who trod me in your speed
with your hoofs!

Since then I descend
each evening from my wood
as a wounded soldier
and I look for my father
to tell him about You.

Maybe I could say:
“ God is like the stag about which
you told me you had seen
as I was a child
and, although you did not bring him
to me, I trusted you”.

But my village is now
like a bird which changes the nest
from a hill to another
and carries everyone farther and farther.

Translated from Romanian by Elena Antohi

THE MIGRATION OF SAINTS

Night after night
The One they say they wait for
Gives them eyes to see in the darkness
And legs of light
To walk quietly like stags

They are heading, unsighted to the crowd
For the lands they were promised

Oh yes, they do not dodge
That wickedness of sorrow
Many have thought of
In their moments of bitter certitude

With those legs of light
They lean like stags against
That shore of sorrow
And sip, for they cannot but so

This is the part of all.

You see them, night after night,
Coming from all over

Carrying their very bodies in their arms
Then throw them away in waters
With holy mirth
Like flower wreaths
Adorned for their Chosen.

Oh, their shiny steps
Hesitating steps like of new born lambs’
Stridethe decrepit roofs of the night.

Only somewhere deep
In a humble city
Ina city like many
A solitary soul
Whatever soul
Of whatever history
Feels their strides on his face,
On his chest and seemingly even on his heart
Light, like kisses.

A SONG FOR FUNERAL

Grieve
And remember your heart

Listen to it beating
Like the horologe of a city
A city you are the only one left in

Run to the field of crows

Yes, he can detach from
His own mind
As from a clod
As from a solitary eave
Welcoming the dawn

Solitary, a stranger, always on the run
His heart – torn and simple
believing until today
That all the crows are 300 years old
Although he cannot remember exactly
Who put this idea
Into his head

Each day he takes this flight
Above these passing, useless things
Above his very thoughts, these thoughts
As unfamiliar
As the rest of the world

Oh, how he would run and mingle
With the crowd of crows
in the ploughing field
But no, not to share those 300 years
People say these creature live
Not for that
Now he is no longer consumed by this wish
He’d found out, he’d found out now he lives forever
He- death has so long been eating - lives forever
He believed it and he knew it
In fact, no way things could have turned
to what they used to be

Nevertheless, those strange black birds attracted him in many ways.

THE THIRST FOR ANONYMITY

The thought of death
Like a bee
Troubling the evenings of may

Like a bird and like a ram
Knocking on the soul’s door

You wish sometimes
You immersed in anonymity
As puppies in a bag
Taken to be drowned
Immerse without much ado
Exile and laurels

Translated from Romanian by Diana Apetri

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