gifts to you

image: from agnes giberne’s the story of the sun, moon, and stars (1898), in the public domain.

Versus to a Moralist

(N+7 & N+12 recombined, after Luis Carlos López)

Oh moralist, who now looks over my roommate
face-deep in the chutney of tropical camellias
to be saluted by she who has been out all nightlight-long,
to be barked at by the do-gooders in their dollar-deep pews,

Oh moralist who in your simpleton manner have laughed
at all the vomitus! In your sidereal shadow
when, keeping carefully in the shallow, the
butler steals the syrup of ipecac.

But you offer, saturnine trollop,
with eloquence in myriad dry heaves,
consolation to him whose throat is raw,

while there to sire you from a drunken breakfast
a long-haired, neurasthenic barmaid,
lousy with crabs who gifts to you doom.


Versos a la luna
By Luis Carlos López

¡Oh, luna, que hoy te asomas al tejado
de la iglesia, en la calma tropical,
para que te salude un trasnochado
y te ladren los perros de arrabal!

¡Oh, luna! . . . ¡En tu silencio te has burlado
de todo! . . . En tu silencio sideral,
viste anoche robar en despoblado
. . . ¡y el ladrón era un Juez municipal!

Mas tú ofreces, viajera saturnina,
con qué elocuencia en los espacios mudos,
consuelo al que la vida laceró,

mientras te cantan, en cualquier cantina,
neurasténicos bardos melenudos
y piojosos, que juegan dominó. . .


Verses to the Moon
(translated from Spanish by William George Williams, 1916)

Oh moon, who now look over the roof
of the church, in the tropical calm
to be saluted by him who has been out all night,
to be barked at by the dogs of the suburbs,

Oh moon who in your silence have laughed at
all things! In your sidereal silence
when, keeping carefully in the shadow, the
municipal judge steals from some den.

But you offer, saturnine traveler,
with what eloquence in mute space
consolation to him whose life is broken,

while there sing to you from a drunken brawl
long-haired, neurasthenic bards,
and lousy creatures who play dominos.

(Poems, 1916/1920, are in the public domain.)

image: from agnes giberne’s the story of the sun, moon, and stars (1898), in the public domain.

What I’m Listening To:

“He bends his mouth up to your ear
The words won’t disappear
He’ll take your eyes out for a ride”

— The Pretty Things / “Baron Saturday”

About istsfor manity

i'm a truncated word-person looking for an assemblage of extracted teeth in a tent full of mosquitoes (and currently writing a novel without writing a novel word) and pulling nothing but the difficult out of the top hat while the bunny munches grass in the hallway. you might say: i’m thee asynchronous voice over in search of a film....
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