Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Gird your loins

Update: The good news is - no bad news. Woo!

Tomorrow is going to be an important day. I am reminded of one of my favourite poems, a translation of a non-existent poem from a novel...

1961
Tip up this year on the fulcrum of its final serif
Revolve it through the degrees from right to upright
Like a lifted flagpole without a flag
Or a flat raised upon the stage of an empty theater
Before which histories will soon be enacted.
Now drop it farther, push it entirely over
As the statue of a deposed leader is thrown
Supine, his gloved finger that pointed Onward
Driven into earth to point Endward instead.
See what you have accomplished?
This rarity comes but once in centuries:
A year that can be overthrown but not reversed,
And after all our labors seems to become itself again.
It is not so. As always, we will never be the same.
The poem occurs very early on in the novel - John Crowley's The Translator - and sinks it, promising something the book can't quite live up to. Tomorrow is the fulcrum, the serif on which everything turns.

No comments: