Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Mistranslation of Justin, Etc.'s "translating, translating..."



mistranslating “translating translating Joseph Burgess’ John Clare” by Justin, Etc.
by Susan Calvillo


a deflated life vest can make the difference
hanging over a headboard        it’s a conversation
starter              after she breaks her pinky in bed
            the crow’s nest is there to save you
for last when sinking
that is…unless             you’re just another grumpy sea monster
not in the mood
for overcast waters as you sleep on your bed of tube worms
                        preying on their hydrothermal vents
                        you were half-merman, I thought

I can’t believe
I can’t believe you’re shaved for this
I’m sorry I got lipstick on your coffee cup                 she said
            I’m sorry                     you said
for bringing my wife along again
the Flying Duchess
may be a Fata Morgana
unlikely, she told you
                        not before sunrise

one morning                in the salt mist
you should like to make a mirage of her
the sound of sails heaving
            the ebb of lips and ships
so that her head may be
always above water
then her broken pinky
might not
            interrupt the groping sea

2 comments:

Glen Armstrong said...

Hi Susan. I enjoyed your prose poems at Beard of Bees and I think your poems might be a good fit for Cruel Garters, the tiny print journal I edit. (A Google search gets you right to us.) Questions? A p.o. box where I might send a free copy? Feel free to email me.

Glen Armstrong
armstron@oakland.edu

sycalvillo said...

Thanks Glen! I really appreciate your taking the time to read it. I would love to see an edition of your journal. An email to follow soon!

-Susan