quinta-feira, 13 de setembro de 2012

Morreu o poeta russo Arkadii Dragomoshchenko

Descobri o trabalho de Arkadii Dragomoshchenko (1946 - 2012) por volta de 2001, por causa de suas colaborações com Lyn Hejinian, poeta norte-americana que o traduziu e que eu lia com entusiasmo àquela época. O poeta nasceu em Potsdam, Alemanha, em 1946, mas vivia desde 1969 em São Petersburgo. Abaixo, excertos de "Phosphor" do poeta russo, em tradução de Lyn Hejinian e Elena Balashova, seguidos do poema "Paper dreams" em tradução de Genya Turovskaya.

Texts by Arkadii Dragomoshchenko

from Phosphor

[1]  Habits of mind result from a redistribution of the places on
     which the eyes fall.  Yes, I'm probably right about this.
     What I'm thinking about at this particular moment allows me
     to assume so.  A rusty rat crossing the street.  A soft,
     interminable twilight, and above it the night lights
     burning.  The room in which we lived was almost eighteen
     meters long.  In the mornings, on streets billowing steam, I
     went around the corner, bare foot but for sandals, to drink
     a cup of hot milk and eat cheese pastry.  Liteiny Prospekt
     was blinding.  I shuffled along in unbuckled sandals.  Amid
     mocking seagulls and love cries.  Through a courtyard to the
     Fontanka, passing the library, toward the circus, the
     bridge.  This is about many things.  It's about emigration.
     About T.S. Eliot and Turgenev.  But what are you thinking
     about?  What did or what does your life consist of?  I like
     your question.  In the kitchen in a glass jar she kept
     demons (warring with cockroaches) which she fed with
     poppyseeds.  Your question comes at absolutely the right
     moment, although it makes me slightly nauseous, the way
     roses or moldy dolls might--vertigo.  By evening my skin
     stung from the sun.  It happened the first time on an
     anthill.  They rushed frantically toward the river.  As if
     through a magnifying glass.  In the future, if he's to
     recount a couple of the plots that interest him (let's
     suppose), he will have to get rid of her.  But of whom, one
     wants to know! History?  Geometry?  Mental habits?  One of
     these plots begins with a murder.

[2]  A yellow-edged photograph.  Beads of laughter on his
     glasses, on the windshield.  Thought is a system, producing
     systematic eliminations.  At the same time, a question
     arises--as to whether or not it is right to assume, having
     left one's message on the answering machine, that the
     resulting communication will be from a living person.  "I'm
     not home," for example, "I can't come to the phone now," or,
     "You have reached so-and-so," etc.  This question, however,
     despite its apparent silliness, is essentially theological,
     since it inevitably touches on the question of the life
     force, the soul, its migrations, and the places it inhabits,
     suggesting "voices of existence," too, not to mention
     routine speculation as to presence and absence.  And indeed,
     if my voice reaches your ear across a particular stretch of
     time (or period of endurance--the experience being in what
     remains), it presupposes a "distance," since you are never
     I.  Does my voice, even being inside me, a single
     being--does my voice reach you, that is, my essential "I"
     (our breathing is an out-terance, a crazy moment dangling
     between "out" and utterance), which does exist, but not for
     you, in your complete acceptance of flickering, glittering
     matter, shrouded in the most delicate rustle of awakening
     that flows from your pursuing vision, where the present has
     already existed?  Where do our identifyings take place?  A
     vibration of the surrounding atmosphere--microwinds, a
     mystical notebook.  And "who" or "what"?  Moreover, the
     people involved in a narrative, in other words the
     characters, don't in themselves represent much of anything,
     except in the case of a woman who takes an important role in
     the action (and there is such a portrait: a familiarly
     shaped mouth, wide lips, a habit of adjusting the shoulders
     of her dress, etc.--and another, intimate portrait, more
     transparent: her brownish pubic hair cut short, an
     imponderable scar on her waist, wide pale aureoles around
     her nipples, the trace of a tattoo between them), whose son
     died a few years ago.  There is some thought that he didn't
     "simply die" but that he was killed near Kandahar not far
     from Thebes, but instead of this romantic invention most
     people prefer the truth, namely that he was hanged on the
     14th of May in the assembly hall of his school by his
     classmates, using a silk cord from the white curtain; and
     possibly, due to unforeseeable circumstances, one of them
     has some notion concerning the silk cocoon of the window and
     a tedious description of a flight across the Atlantic,
     abounding in similes and necessary to the progress of future

[3]  One would have to be an idiot to speak of a "sequel" to the
     new.  This is impossible to explain to artists.  It's
     utterly impossible even to explain it to the man who sits
     rubbing the crystal eyes of the fish swallowed into the
     museum's lottery drum.  Ball lightning, rocking, froze over
     my grandfather's glass of vodka and after a few moments
     crept in through the window, where my grandmother, because
     of her nearsightedness, took it for one of the demons living
     in the kitchen in her glass jar which had somehow slipped
     past the cockroach patrols.  The terra-cotta colored morocco
     leather of the book bindings, the faded imprint embossing
     the leather, the copper coolness of the sextant, the
     mother-of-pearl sheen of blackened silver inlaying the
     yellow bone paper knife--that day is no different from yesterday.
     There are two types of suicide (of course, it's possible
     there are more).  First, when your will and the world's
     desires meet and you are shattered while attempting to
     enclose them in your own existence--you become too strong,
     sturdy, bulky, heavy--and I don't pity you--like a porcelain
     Christmas bird.  Second, when you suddenly find yourself in
     a realm of deafness, where nothing reflects anything else
     and where for a while a terrifying image of a false world is
     erected: what surrounds you surrounds you, fingers flowing
     into the porous substance of matter, every second thought
     finding uniquely correct solutions.  No questions exist.
     You are born, you die, you eat, you explain the essence of
     phenomena, enumerating all of them.  Or you don't enumerate
     them. In which case, I don't pity you.

[4]  What, one asks, is there to pity?  Probably some
     contradiction between "desire" and "wish."  The more intense
     the desire, the stronger the non-wishing.  A person,
     realizing this, dedicates himself to Demeter.  The morning
     flowed smoothly, like a comparison slowly unfolding into
     similarities.  And this was all in the course of things.
     What is this "there are no senses"?....

[5]  No?  Could it possibly be "no"?  But they waved sunflowers
     after us, which had turned gold like their eyes, withered by
     grief and yet also by consciousness of the happiness which
     had befallen them; or rather, of course, first by one and
     then by the other; but they simply hadn't managed to figure
     out that they had been happier in other times when other
     models of happiness had been offered them.  But we already
     know how the smoothly flowing morning takes a bend toward
     the nightingale darkness, when night, snow white as a sable,
     nurtures the phosphorous in a half-sphere of a porcelain
     cup.  And to that extent we know the figure of fate and the
     theory of catastrophes, painstakingly illustrated by the
     dazzling pulse of a system which upsets all calculations as
     to how they'll behave--in the same way, gusts of wind strike
     one's face with the finest sands and with crackling leaves
     when the street is parched with yellow like a throat sifting
     the granular air.  A mothy murk.  I suggest we take the
     following walk.  Beginning on our street, we'll cross the
     intersection at the point where the huge shadow of a nut is
     falling on the sidewalk, its sound momentarily making voices
     completely unintelligible; then we'll proceed straight ahead
     toward the school where after all I happen to have studied
     and from which I was expelled as from so many others,
     although I suppose it's inappropriate to mention this.  Then
     we'll go through a sparse grove of mulberry trees and barren
     apple trees and come to the chemical plant's sedimentation
     tanks, incredible in their magnitude, always astounding both
     his and my (that is, to put it another way, your and my)
     imagination--to the cyclops-like squares and rectangles
     formed by the embankments, which were formed in prehistoric
     times by bulldozers and are, as always, filled in some
     places with milky nacreous slush and in others with a
     substance startling in the beauty of its unearthly color, an
     "electric," azure emerald threaded with some kind of
     fibrous, brass gold spasm, shot in some places with jasper
     blazing up at the very moment you look away and streaked
     like rainbowed spots of oil in the sun, and in yet others
     with a hellish red plasma, and all this in one sense forms a
     single field as far as the forsaken shooting range: in its
     terrifying flatness, a mirror, in whose zenith is placed the
     formula for the inversion of light.  It would be naive, in
     light of this field, to think about your brother's bones,
     brittle, whittled like a wafted message, or about your
     sister's hair.  The girl here doesn't comb her braids, the
     geese don't honk, our meeting here is set for noon.  And
     further on we'll come to the shooting range, empty cartridge
     cases, willows.  In a two hour walk among the hunted
     wormwoods there's much else to be found.  A map of poetry.
     The broken mirrors of the foliage.  The broken mirrors of
     number.  Tendrils of conclusion.  The "humane" is washed
     from a body endowed with feelings--not one single reflection
     falls on the object.  On an uninhabited island an object
     replaces memory as that which proceeds toward the future.  A
     decision has been made.  Torquato Tasso's first visit to Don
     Carlos took place at the end of the 80s, the second at the
     beginning of the 90s.  It's worth noting that comment
     regarding a collaborative writing of madrigals, and not only
     such poems as they both wrote about the prince but also
     about his wife, including stanzas on his first wife's death.
     Hounded by madness, Tasso dashes from one courtyard to
     another.  The autumn weather remains dry.  Near Kherson the
     stubble is burning.  The first visit.  Some correspondence.
     A second visit.

[6]  The musicians--one must give them their due--were quite
     good.  But Monteverdi!  Why, he began composing when he was
     fifteen....  That time whose splinters resemble broken
     mirrors of foliage has never come.
(translated by Lyn Hejinian and Elena Balashova)


Paper Dreams

Black paper dreams of its own
inaudible rustle;
its own reflection in white.
Heat drowsily watches heat
through the panes of passion.

Metamorphoses of water.
Carrying reflections
down to the bone’s marrow,
the mirrors of droplets dry up,

Black paper dreams
of black: its dream constrained

by the nature of non-color.
Through the membrane –
the single-mindedness of repetition,
through the body – the needle flies,
bereft of thread, of decay.

Shadow lies upon brick walls.
The gematria of melting
of exclusions.

The letter dreams of the same
paper’s rustling,
in which hearing distinguishes
the contours of a poet,
who dreams of Hasids
burning out as a page of song
on the stones of the ocean,
reducing touch to gesture.
The dream dreams a dream of consonants,
the page –
where black assumes
the limits of incision –
dreams of the borders of the letter, mica, light.
I love to touch with my lips
the tattoo at the stem of your shoulder,
(the calendrical whirl of the Aztecs),
so that word may open to word.

To buy wine,
again there isn’t enough money,
images of sand and wind.

Each dream, exposing
the honeycombs of visions,
engages thread into motion:
fingers slipping downward
Guetat Liviani, Frederique
are spinning a cobweb
– the tenderness of violence –
the ethereal fabric of recognition
in intensity and indication.
However quiet
your voice may be.
However much it fills coincidences
with hesitant executions.

The fingers dream of the keyholes
emitted by stones,
which see in their dreams
the azure salts of the sun,
the blade’s whistle, water’s branch,
which see in their dreams
skin, celestial bodies, teeth,
the tattoo of indistinct speech
on the standards of breathing –
such are

the touch of tongue to tongue,
of saliva to tongue;
such are the outspread arms and legs
of a man and a woman, –
the golden mean on the book’s cover, –
which dreams of pages
over which the night saunters,

and the night is dreamt by speech,
like the throat of heavy light
and the sign’s endless ribbon
which engirds those who are
slowly bringing their hands together
as if the fingers feel for something else in the arc.
A desert,
imprisoned in touch.

Wine sees in its dreams
all of the forementioned things,
which cross into diminution
along the steps of un-thinging,
(an unhurried narration),

and I, examining the wine
that lives in glassy limits,
like the threads
of fusion and touch,
falling from the fingers
toward the puppets of flight
in the gardens of noontime tortures.
The sign – is the quietest razor of darkness
Wine has no “right”
no “left”. Death
has no name – it is only a list,
the spilling over of the two-way mirror,
where the equal sign is rubbed away

to the differentiation
between man and woman

(translated from Russian by Genya Turovskaya)


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