For Ida and Ani Kavafian
Tendresse de loin en loin ce grand repos
Aimé Césaire, Ferrements
(Tenderness in long intervals this grand repose)
The two palm-trees reach the pinnacle
of ecstasy in their vibreto
How did we know theirs was the destination
Where I find myself standing
in front of the mirror
or in the back of the mirror
Sleep and Sunday daylight and workaday days
are as the sea meeting the shore
Transported here in their midst
to music's sanctuary
From the ceaseless barrage of the external world
O shadows left sutures of the long march of Van*
We revisit here as the signature
of Spring in the midst of Winter
And where once I was "dumbfounded by a word"
becomes a thousand words
And out of the "broken world" witness
Témoignage wholeness as a horizon
as reduced to a microscopic element I
am carried on the tip of your bow.
Copyright Sotère Torregian
November-December AD 2009
Note: étonnement, Fr., state of awe.
*Van: The Death March genocide of Armenians by Ottoman Turks, 1915.