The Piano

by  Lea Nagy
translated by Hélène Cardona

A close-up photograph looking down the keyboard of a piano, run through a digital filter that makes it appear to be a watercolor painting toward the edges

In your living room was
a bone-colored piano.
In boredom we pressed
a key.
We even sang.
Do you remember?
You know, just so
something fills your
rented apartment in Buda,
and recovers its moldy silence.
At the time we were
both still beautiful.
It was fall.
I saw you less
and less.
I could not sleep.
Still can’t.

Translation from the French

Lea Nagy is the recipient of an NKA grant (National Cultural Fund of Hungary). She has published two poetry collections, Kõhullás / Whirlwind and Légörvény / Stone Fall, with Editions Napkút in Budapest. She won the prize for Best Young Hungarian Poet in 2018. A French collection, Le chaos en spectacle, just came out from Éditions du Cygne in Paris.

Hélène Cardona received her MA in American literature from the Sorbonne and has authored five translations and three collections. Her awards include the Independent Press and International Book Awards. She worked as a translator for the Canadian Embassy, taught at Hamilton College and Loyola Marymount University, and received the Royal Society of Arts Translation Diploma (Cambridge).