(copyright of the artist)
PSALM FOR THE TWENTIETH CENTURY by Peter Thabit Jones
Blessed are the hills that the acid rain kills.
Blessed are the trees dying of disease.
Blessed is the flower sucked of its power.
Blessed is the grass destroyed by the gas.
Blessed is the soil that we stupidly spoil.
Blessed are the clouds, the chemical shrouds.
Blessed are the rivers now they are sewers.
Blessed is the sand like mess in my hand.
Blessed is the sea that is oiled and filthy.
Blessed is the sky where the sick winds fly.
Blessed are the hens in their holocaust dens.
Blessed is the grain grown only for gain.
Blessed is the fruit that we daily pollute.
Blessed is the meat that we cannot eat.
Blessed is the bird that is no longer heard.
Blessed is the seal that the knives unpeel.
Blessed is the air that our lungs cannot bear.
Blessed is the town that we bulldoze down.
Blessed is the child that the city drives wild.
Blessed is the man and his 'live-far-now' plan.
Blessed is the Earth as we plunder its worth.
(copyright of the artist)
The tree wants to grow by the water
to feel newness course along its limbs.
And yet it grows among the corn
And jawing birds,
and watches (a helpless observer)
as they steal the grain and falling cobs.
The birds are its company.
Would the river,
with wet tongue caressing its roots
be the same?
BENEATH THIS TIME
I need a gloomy day beneath this time
and a fierce primrose to look after,
growing the stars' lights in a large jar
I need to become a vision you master,
gradually increasing the power of
my anemone's mouth
In the soft grass I swim
And no clouds can keep me calm
when I embrace the waves of your body
lying in that violet clump of pansies
In the deep bush of my garden
You are the dew and the flower
beneath this time
Ho bisogno di un giorno cupo sotto questo tempo
e di una primula feroce di cui prendermi cura,
nel crescere luci di stelle dentro una brocca
Ho bisogno di diventare visione che possiedi,
gradualmente accrescendo il potere della mia
Nuoto nell'erba soffice
E non ci sono nubi che mi tengano calma
Quando abbraccio le onde del tuo corpo
a giacere in quel gruppo di viole purpuree
Nella profonda boscaglia del mio giardino
che tu sei rugiada e sei fiore,
sotto questo tempo
I cry to the winds
hear no answer
cry all night
the stars are cold
beg for your arms
you hug yourself:
The moon waxes
never grows warmer.
Grido ai venti
non sento risposta
grido tutta la notte
le stelle sono fredde
supplico per le tue braccia
ma tu abbracci te stesso:
La luna cresce
non si scalda mai.
Translated by Lidia Chiarelli
In the shape of a circle
The work was inspired by a poem Lament /In country sleep,1952/
by the twentieth century poet Dylan Thomas.
Lament /first phrases/
When I was a windy boy and a bit
When I was a gusty man and a half
When I was a man you could call a man
When I was half the man I was
Now I am a man no more no more
In the shape of a circle is about passing off in our life.
The touched relation between life and death.
Speak about position between light and dark.
Each person must break through an this way.
The cycle repeats around.
Mirek Antoniewicz ‘ 2010
(DANCE MACABRE, by SARAH JACKSON, Canada – courtesy of Naomi Jackson)
The little old lady had lived for long,
She was great of age
And the time was coming along
For her to exit life's stage
But there were those who dwelt beside her
That strange things of her said
She had contact with the other world
And that strange prayers she made
Some they were of her afraid
And were not afraid to say
That when she was dead
It would not be a bad day.
And so the illness struck
And slowly she got more weak
And by her her neighbours stuck
And failed bad of her to speak
For tis bad ill to speak of the dying
And of those that are past and gone
So to pray and think good they were trying
Though they fooled no one.
They were gathered in the bedroom
More in the living room too
There was but two for a broom
For large houses they were few.
And the toilet it was outside
Water was drawn from a well
As was normal for the times standards applied
As many old people will tell.
And the chatter of the neighbours
As the woman drew her last breath
Was silenced as from her room
Came a shout at her moment of death,
And of a sudden, out the door
A big black dog fled
Snarling, racing across the floor
The spirit of the woman, now dead!
"Twas Satan himself" more say
Came to take her soul to Hell
And to their knees to pray
In unison, they fell.
Those near the door outside raced fast
To the yard where the beast had been
And light twas good though evening was past:
There was no dog to be seen.
If this is all true I don't know
But to tell it I never fail
For when there is conversation in flow
It sure makes a damn good tale!
TOMAS O' CARTHAIGH