Buoy the population of the soul
Toward their destination before they drown
~ Robert Pinsky
March 2024
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Thursday, 9. September 2004

Breathing Space July - Tomas Transtromer

The man who lies on his back under huge trees is also up in them. He branches out into thousands of tiny branches. He sways back and forth, he sits in a catapult chair that hurtles forward in slow motion.

The man who stands down at the dock screws up his eyes against the water. Docks get older faster than men. They have silver-gray posts and boulders in their gut. The dazzling light drives straight in.

The man who spends the whole day in an open boat moving over the luminous bays will fall asleep at last inside the shade of his blue lamp as the islands crawl like huge moths over the globe.

Big Book Of Poetry

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Prelude - Tomas Transtromer

Awakening is a parachute jump from the dream. Freed from the choking vortex, the diver sinks towards the green map of morning. Things magnify. He sees, from the fluttering lark's position, huge tree-root systems like branchings of subterranean chandeliers. Above ground, in tropical flood, earth's greenery stands with lifted arms, as if listening to the beat of invisible pistons. And he sinks towards summer, is lowered into its dazzling crater, lowered between fissures of moist green eons trembling under the sun's turbine. Then halts the downward dive through time's eyeblink, the wingspread becomes an osprey's glide over streaming water. Bronze Age trumpets: their outlaw tune hangs motionless over the void.

In the day's first hours consciousness can own the world like a hand enclosing a sun-warm stone. The skydiver stands under the tree. With the plunge through death's vortex will light's great chute spread over his head?

Big Book Of Poetry

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Two Cities - Tomas Transtromer

There is a stretch of water, a city on each side one of them utterly dark, where enemies live. Lamps are burning in the other. The well-lit shore hypnotizes the dark shore.

I swim out in a trance on the glittering dark water. A steady note of a tuba comes in. It's a friend's voice: "Take up your grave and walk."

Big Book Of Poetry

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