Rios secos, claridades imperfeitas

A dried up river is like the soul

A dried up river is like the soul

Of a poet who can't write, yet perceives
With imperfect clarity his theme and grieves
To parched death over the drought. But his goal
Once a wholesome sea of clearest crystal
Recedes, grows grey in heartseye, like old love leaves,
Leaves the mind altogether. He conceives
Nothing to replace it: only at the pole
Of memory flickers some senseless compass.
So the river, by her pitying trees,
Is an agony of stones, horrors which sank
But are now declared, bleached. For it is these,
These stones and nothingnesses which possess
When river is a road and mind a blank.

Malcolm Lowry, in "As cantinas e outros poemas do álcool e do mar", Assírio e Alvim, Selecção e Trad. de José Agostinho Baptista.

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