Thursday, July 12, 2012
The following poem is the third in a series of 3 poems by the Israeli poet Hava Pinhas-Cohen that I translated and published recently in The Toronto Journal of Jewish Thought: http://cjs.utoronto.ca/tjjt/
The Weight of Emptiness
Lord, the whole weight of emptiness
You placed on my shoulders. The whole weight of emptiness
Bends my back
Pulls my neck
To follow you.
The power of your touch that hovers
Over my neck and earlobes
The power of longing
To make you present for me
In my lying down and my rising up
My going out. My going out in the morning
On my journey where a shadow of a white dog
Whose simple desires are before me—
And you are with me. To you I tell
My wishes, I hear my voice
Fill the emptiness with words.
And you inhabit the chambers of my body, my throat, my guts,
Every place that is open and hollow is yours.
Cleaving to your silence. No voice, no word on the phone,
No letter, no touch. No human thing I can claim.
I went out to declare it in the streets
Gathering signs for my children to find their way through this cold and empty place.
Translated by Sharon Green