"The Atlantic Day," Patrizia Cavalli
When with my judgment I lay
myself out to the tepid peace of every day,
the docile afternoons, the wide and natural
sleep, no longer opposed to the climate
that equal and still caresses me instead
– the clotted voices open and let me enter
and the street-smells pay court to me
and I give myself at piazza corners
to old men's and girls' looks, and chastely in love
I find every excuse to make me stay –
at once there returns the Atlantic day.
The light high, the high sounds of the light,
and the distances open. That glimmer
of milk at the blinds is enough, those shadow
slots both dense and deep, the dazzling freshness,
the fanning boughs from balconies,
look summer's here and the sky becomes sea.
The city arises and sailing off wavers
moved by the breezes. Called from the heights
with no anchorage or weights my senses
no longer gathered but wandering loosed
absolute and alone are lost in the air
and they send home news of terror.
News: while at home every object
rediscovers its drawer, its shelf
I become marginal to myself.
My own matter evaporates.
The dark and dense island reappears to me.
That thick substance, promise of remedy,
let me come in. Bear me to my limit
surround me, mark my edges with caresses,
with the weight of your body give me body.
But it's the remedy produces the pain.
Translation from the Italian
By Peter Robinson