Open Closet Door & We Call the Breath of the Mountains

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mountains full
Photo by Lucas Jampietro (via Flickr)

 

Open Closet Door

I open the door of my closet

as I open a diary.

There hangs my life

my worn-out daily existence

no secrets

intimacy exposed

that no button will defend

no pocket secure,

a truer mirror than any other

holding up to scrutiny

the measures of my body.[private]

 

Closet

tabernacle of my room

which I open in the morning

as if at a window

to consecrate the ritual of my day.

Blue Beard’s parlour

cluttered with pendants

long skirts and veils

entangled yet trickling no blood.

Decapitated bodies

my hands missing

from limp sleeves.

 

From the closet my clothes

pursue me

like a chest of heirlooms or

maledictions.

Skins of mine hanging

at rest

silent guardians

of my perfumes

more delicate textures

of myself

that light washes out

that time wears away

that moths nibble at

still, they’ll last much longer on their hangers

than I on my bones.

 

I won’t take a single one.

I’ll go unclothed

leaving behind me

an open door.

 

We Call the Breath of the Mountains

 

Mountains are not as is said

unmoving.

Mountains shift in the light

green ships without sails

that luminosity strikes

and night straddles.

Between two hills

the axe of the sun

carves out a valley

that afternoon light closes

stitching up slopes

with purple thread.

Ridges aligned

in the morning

a docile drove

in the thread of time

they will be struck

till forming a wall

on the horizon

raised up against the light.

 

Mountains are not as is said

inert.

Their fine breath

which hovers and journeys

we call

mist.[/private]

 

Translated by Diane Grosklaus Whitty.

Specialising in academia and the arts, Diane Grosklaus Whitty has translated prose and poetry by Marina Colasanti, The Devil and the Land of the Holy Cross by Laura de Mello e Souza, and Baroque: the Soul of Brazil by Affonso Romano de Sant’Anna.

Marina Colasanti

About Marina Colasanti

Marina Colasanti was born in 1937 in Eritrea and lived in Libya and Italy before moving to Brazil. She has published more than fifty books including eight works of poetry for children and adults, as well as short stories and essays. She also does her own illustrations. She has received major prizes in Brazil and throughout Latin America.

Marina Colasanti was born in 1937 in Eritrea and lived in Libya and Italy before moving to Brazil. She has published more than fifty books including eight works of poetry for children and adults, as well as short stories and essays. She also does her own illustrations. She has received major prizes in Brazil and throughout Latin America.

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