Poetry at Sangam



Untitled by José Luís Peixoto

Translated by Hugo dos Santos

When I grew tired of lying to myself,
I started to write a book of poetry.

I decided two hours ago, but it has been much
longer since I started to tire. The tiredness
is a skin gradual like autumn. Pause.

Rest slowly on the flesh, like the leaves
on the earth, and sink only to the bones,
like the leaves sink into the earth and touch
the dead and turn fertile by their side.

The city continues in the streets, the girls laugh,
but there is a secret that ferments in the silence.
It’s the words, free, the books yet to be written,
that which will come with future seasons.

There is always hope at the end of the avenues.
But there are puddles on the sidewalks. There is cold,
there is tiredness, I decided two hours ago, autumn.

And my body doesn’t want to lie, and that which
isn’t my body, time, knows that
I have many poems to write.