Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Midday Summer Dream: 10

Yannis Ritsos

O CHRIST, why do you wear that long mournful dress and those thorns on your head? Wouldn't flowers be better?

Were you worried the door to heaven wouldn't open if you put poppies in your messed up hair?

Don't laugh because I have a bandage on my head.

I fell into the bushes the day before yesterday chasing butterflies.

Come, let's go to the field hand in hand like children and I will teach you to play the flute.

They wouldn't look good on you, those wrinkles on mother's face when she sets down her work for a moment and watches the new moon through the window.

Let's go cut your sorrowful hair. We'll use the large shears they use on sheep.

You'll see, God will love us. He'll let us sit at his feet. And He'll smile sweetly as we place daisies in his long mustache.

And when it gets dark, we'll hitch crickets to his tiny carriage and we will ride through paradise while the angels light the stars that shine down upon all the other children remaining below.

from Midday Summer Dream (1938) [Collected Poems: Alpha ---pg 345-346]

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