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Mariana Gurza:Pe urmele lui Zenon – On Zeno’s footsteps (english version)

on-zenos-footsteps-book-cover-v2-1

To my children,

Ioana-Valentina and Vlad-Gabriel            

Foreword The title of anthology suggests that it is question of recreation of an ancient unconventional Greek style which encapsulates us into the myth of Zeno from Eleea (490 – 430 BC) and in original, subtle, profound and old fashioned manner, the author proposes to our delight a collection of lyrical feelings and transmutations. This collection has thirty five chosen poems. Brilliantly crafted, poems of Mariana Gurza are perceptive to natural landscape and fundamental questions of life and death. This volume offers Romanian original text and its homologue in English on opposite pages. Translation of George Anca surprises with hawk eye the splendor of original, transmits with mastery poetical beauty and used rhythm, as well as complexity of language depth of author Mariana Gurza. A profound love poetry… sensual, musical and delicate.

Ben Todica- Australia


PE URMELE LUI ZENON
Editura Timpolis, 2012Timişoara

***

I LOOK TO THE SKY

Born again,
Here I am!
I went through an ugly dream forks.
Unknown by anyone,
I encircled in my mute grief.
Yet now, o Lord, I am delighted
with your gift of new life,
for laughing, weeping,
fighting, living,
like rocks in their immobility.

             

                         THE HEAVEN WEEPS IN MY HEART

I thought that disguising myself
as light,
as despair,
I would lull to sleep your imagination.
I succeeded
to glimmer my angel
lost from me,
searching for me
in my gesture
of humility.

                      TELL ME WHO I AM

I thought you know
who I am.
I thought I was
equally
shadow and being.
Til I realized
that in time mirror
I was not more than
a cry,
a peal of laughter,
a white dress,
a candle flame,
a red egg,
a piece of wafer,
an eye of light.

                             FLIGHT AMIDST CLOUDS

It came as if I was a bird in flight.
Which one in the God’s
counting?
Which one returned by wind?
I should be
recognized
after my wild prattle,
after nests hidden
in hourglass
of the time tax collector.

                  I WEEP IN THE TRESHOLD OF NIGHT
                                                        (To my daughter Ioana)

In the garden of my soul
a singing bird made her nest.
It has something of prayer,
of call,
in her dialogue
with jasmine,
with wind,
with thought…
She laid her blue egg
in the false golden orbit,
and her song cleared
like my sight
after the first rain of tears.

                                     ENIGMATIC IS ALL

The words sit strangely
between life and another world.
Abyss? Be it as far as possible!
To read about it in books!
Now we are here, in the picture
with white winter,
tomorrow we will be in green-green.
Of course apricot trees will as well bloom,
will ripen,
also the fields will bear fruit
as every year.
We will be here to collect them.
Even pains, transient,
will remain alone.

                                OBSTINACY

Do not look back,
nothing is to be seen.
It’s me,
a blue shadow
gliding slowly
on already wedded alleys.
Do not listen,
it is my thought
ground by a green love.
You will never hear
my whispers
metamorphosed in golden grain.
Do not look in my eyes:
you will see only the night blindness.
So… I’ll lose myself in labyrinths,
pining after your embrace.

                          YOU AMAZE ME, FRIEND

with your desire to walk
on traces of the saints
to return toward self.
But you don’t talk to me
about pilgrims splashed
with mud.
In your interior world
you have an answer,
as I also have it
in gloomy days
when everything seems
to slip out of my hands.

                                     PICTURE INFINITY
You had ended the book of “war”
thus I printed you in my heart,
like a star
under your thought light
good to cure wound of child
that you remained.
Tell me what have you seen
in other life?
Did you succeed to count the stars,
to adorn yourself
with presented gem?
Or did you kept only image
of the infinity?

                                 SEARCH FOR SEALF
The memory is mimosa pudica
today it opens with abnegation,
tomorrow is emptied by senses.
At each touching
man hauls inside
searching for self
in the first trace on clay
kept in palm by God.
Kneeling conceited,
at his feet:
the earthling.

                              I AM AFRAID FOR YOU, SON
Before being you,
son,
it was me,
it was the luminous
longing singing words,
luminously singing in my soul.
And you came,
like a gallop of green green…
Therefore, this spring,
pin it, my dear, to the lapel
and show it to the tomorrow,
when those
with traveled horses
will come to the halt
of men.

                                   GREEN TIMES
One evening
mother forgot
outside the sack with salt
the morning was a salt see.
Father left his scythe
on edge of this sea
and it rusted…
First child born
that evening
had his skin tanned…
It was the first sign
that time for pray arrived,
to stop for a while
and lay it near us
heating it like
the abandoned child.

                            TO WEAR IT MYSELF
For second act
now within writing
you intend to become
the grain of sand
remained on time sole
which I carry
myself
every day
every season.

                           POEM IN WHITE VERSE
Sign that poetry lives
is the white verse
which cheated the rhyme.
From here the poetry starts
from this photograph
I left
at your hand
with some oblique lines
out of a manuscript
from which,
dear friend,
you torn a page,
you burnt it in a cigarette,
before getting cured
of me.

                                 LONGING
Toward His world
all bridges have been raised.
I had to give toll
also to the time,
to healing icons,
to last horse
which has broken the bit.
Hot in my hand,
the last penny
remained
like a song on lips
when one is surprised
by perfect likeness
with one from the dream

                          YOUR PAIN HURTS ME
To be not recognized by us,
grandfather’s latter disguise
was into Prince Charming.
He was the same,
with his wonder-horse,
eternity in front of him,
anterior lives backward,
other disguises.
In one he was like a saint.
Grandmother had crochet for him
a cap of pearls,
in other a bright halo.
Perhaps I met him
into a tale,
or I saw him
on some wall with graffiti,
and I wanted to be my grandfather.

                       HUMILITY
                                 (To my son Vlad)
I’m like a cloudy leaf
Fallen to your feet, Jesus.
Only prayers still give me power
After so much struggle and sorrow.
My beloved child is tried again now
And I can not stop the start;
I made a twin angel out of my tears
To stay with him as stroking.
I do not know if saints heard my prayers,
But I know that beyond the clouds
the saint and gentle sight
Watches and is among us.

                                        SHOW
We wind in acrobatic circles,
Everyone wants to look more tenacious,
We know neither when to stop,
But we roll spectacularly.
Politics became a poem,
Rhyme is mostly paired,
Verse is full of promises and nostalgia,
Rhythm is alert and stanza already globalized.

                                     DAD, I MISS YOU
I miss you, dad, so much I miss you,
and, God, hard is the split
and I didn’t know you’ll die
wishing you all the time alive.
I do not know if ever erred
and hardly want you forgive me
with reconciled heart I’d be
that you rest among the fair.

                        WHERE ARE YOU GRANDPA
Where are you grandpa, forgotten among strangers
thrown into a corner of ground,
did someone put to you a cross,
being Romanian,
or they have mocked you
and made you ash?
Stand up from the grave and say
what cloth is a cloth in the alienated country,
cry as to be heard by
Transylvania, Banat,
what Bucovina’s old the Kingdom would have got!
Why did they tortured you, poor Romanian,
and your soles were beaten,
without food, without water,
with head downward?

Stand up and tell me
what did the stranger to you,
why are we removed again?
What saints are telling you in the depths,
how Chernovtsi is doing?

                                   LONE UNEMPLOYED
It’s cold in house, his body frost,
empty of dreams and hopes,
lost,
an unemployed walks
with frozen tears.
It’s hard to go farther,
when pocket is missing
he warps again beautiful lies
thinking to what will he put on the table
of unreasonable children.
And looking again beseechingly to sky,
begging the mercy the Christian,
he would want a better life, an honest penny,
to beg no more in full churches.
Again his grant didn’t arrive,

the age doesn’t permit him to work
for see, Lord,
if one isn’t young
do not have any chance left.
From time to time a passer by
as sad as him
put in his hand a penny.
You humble unemployed start to cry
and run scared to light a candle;
for Lord, how well it’s among saints
when only them one can say what it hurts.

                           THE HOPE
I’d go to infinity
with a pagan song of longing,
and in trembling tears
I’d sow love;
I’d hung among stars
with hands of flowers
and I’d subdue a world,
a world full of errors.

                           INDIFFERENCE
Passer by,
look around you
and tell me what you see.
How look lin
ke the eyes of children,
of old people,
how much elegant are mothers,
our mothers?
What you feel seeing so much sadness,
what you feel when a poor child comes
and begs a penny for a roll?
I wonder what changed us
to become so indifferent
to those we see daily
shivering and distressed
by rapid going of the seasons.

                          MANIFESTO FOR LIFE
                                               (To my daughter Ioana)
Let horses wander on the spread plains
Free in the crazy game of other days,
Without burdens and heavy chains
To feel how life is like.
Let flowers grow where it is green
And buds kept dewy up to dawn
to bear in the sun of green dreams
In this life full of errors.
Let my thought undefiled
scorching of love lost
Let my soul clean,
And dreams green…

                                UNCONSCIOUSNESS
Who will get limit of Unconsciousness
Now that we are at crossroads?
Who will answer for many poor
struggling and taking away my dear?
We are too little in the great fight,
that others do with abrupt start.
What will it happen with this land
When we are giving all at lend?
Nothing good left, everything rot?
Some desperately sell to unknown;
We stay with a smattering of corn
crying at Stephen the Great’s tomb.
Don’t we know land feathers
given in ages by forefathers?
Is for us better
with shakes together?

                             SENTIMENTAL PARADOX
Man learns in order to be wise;
the stupid cultivates vegetables of others
without understanding
which is the root
and by where the sap flows.
Poet writes only to be called
a poor scribe
at world’s court.
People love for they have
to love…
There is an unwritten law
which obliges us to love.
But as love became a relation
between supply and demand,
nobody is sufficiently rich
to buy the love…

                               OUR LANGUAGE
Our language, like petals of a rose,
I found it into a corner, thrown
At a theater wardrobe.
I shivered when I saw it;
Wilted,
Trampled
By dirty shoes
But with foreign labels.
Our language sings alone
And suffer
Hoping vitamins
Pure Romanian.
Our language remains saint
Because
Up there, in heaven,
Someone
Blessed it
Since the creation of the world.

                         LONGING MIRROR
I stand on a hidden shore,
you stay hidden in heights.
Between us -an ocean
will always broke us up.
Alone
I search for lost steps trace;
Clothed in waves
I look to infinity searching…
Hope runs
on a sunny mast,
and the song rests…
From lyrics I dared
to make harp for my thought
from tears
longing mirror.

                       ON ZENO’S FOOTSTEPS
I caught sadness in hands
and clothed it in tears.
I welcomed the smile
and I toasted wormwood wine
in cups of nostalgia.
I hung the longing in my locks
an gave color to the night,
then
I ran…
I was afraid.
I ran trembling
toward a vagrant candlestick
just like Zeno.
We surprised each other
wondering in the night

                     MUSIC LOVER
A music lover
writes with light strips
his thoughts,
sowing quietly
faith buds.
Waits a sunrise,
a sunset…
Song around,
a sad,
bitter
song;
and music lover waits.
Waits to sip
longing
from carafe of red wine
and to purify his face
into ephemeral mirrors.

                         ONLY WOMAN?
My soul
doesn’t differ at all
from your soul.
My heart can have
violet blue iridescence,
otherwise I don’t see
why my feet bleed
when you bring huge irises
and leave them too far from the day
in which love should revive.

                         I WAS BEAUTIFUL
I was beautiful
when waiting for you.
But it’s been a while
since we two
rocked
on two rainbows
after rain
washed my lips
of your kisses.
And yet my heart,
wrapped in your love,
has kept
the sacred seal
of your
loving touch,
there,
among clouds
colors,
lightnings
wasted by loves.

                              SAD BRANCHES
A branch beats in my window
like a desolate tear,
it doesn’t say anything to me,
only trembles
and I see it more and more wilted.
I open the window and feel
the drop world coldness;
I cry too,
I can not shut,
but I feel
I have nothing to say.
Clouds have been nesting at my breast,
it’s hard to warm them up,
they are cold,
and I feel my master is
only God in heaven.

 

Translation by George Anca

*

Translator’s Note

„She wants to detonate the selfishness around” (Adrian Dinu Rachieru), „silence will not restrain her soul” (Eleonora Schipor), „lyrics become her universe and salvation” (Nina Ceranu). Not excepting romantic erotic statements, the poems of Mariana Gurza (with roots in northern Bucovina, born in Banat, mother of children), have almost always lengyh of Lord’s Prayer. Translator listened, concomitantly, also songs by Frank Sinatra, choosing only few quasi-mystical recalls written over the years and published in volumes: Paradox sentimental / Sentimental Paradox, Ed. Augusta, 1998; Gânduri nocturne / Night thoughts, Ed. Augusta, 1999; Nevoia de a sfida tacerea / Need to defy silence, Ed. Augusta, 2000, Lumini şi umbre / Lights and shadows, Ed.Augusta, 2001; Lacrima iubirii / Tears of love, Ed. Artpress, 2003, Ultimul strigăt / Last cry, Eubeea, 2006.

George Anca

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