Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tomas Tranströmer: "Allegro"

After a black day, I play Haydn,
and feel a little warmth in my hands.

The keys are ready. Kind hammers fall.
The sound is spirited, green, and full of silence.

The sound says that freedom exists
and someone pays no tax to Caesar.

I shove my hands in my haydnpockets
and act like a man who is calm about it all.

I raise my haydnflag. The signal is:
"We do not surrender. But want peace."

The music is a house of glass standing on a slope;
rocks are flying, rocks are rolling.

The rocks roll straight through the house
but every pane of glass is still whole.

"Allegro" by Tomas Tranströmer, from The Winged Energy of Delight: Selected Translations, edited by Robert Bly. Translated from the Swedish by Robert Bly. © Harper Perennial, 2005.  

Photography credit: "Close Up of Male Hands Playing the Piano," by Diego Cervo (originally color).


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