THEODORE ENSLIN VERNON


Chester, Pennsylvania (Estados Unidos) 1925- Milbridge, Maine, 2011

LAS PERTENENCIAS


En lo alto
de tu cuarto
estaba sentado tranquilo
con tus cosas desperdigadas a mi alrededor:
tu amor por ellas es
evidente
en su desorden.
Las que has usado
desplazaron polvo, y las pusiste
de alguna forma a mi disposición-
limpias, con bordes luminosos,
con un amor que depende
de ti,
usadas por tus manos
incluso por tu impaciente
deseo de quitártelas de encima,
a todas ellas, para poder respirar un instante.
Para ti no parecerán amigables,
siendo como son amigas de los tuyos,
y demasiado bien conocidas;
pero para mí ellas traen una promesa
que debiera estar en ti -no en ellas-
en lo alto de tu cuarto.

de This Do & The Talent, 1966. Traducción: Eric Schierloh
* Copy: De Theodore Enslin, Fin del Invierno en Maine & otros poemas (Barba de Abejas editorial).

TO BUILD A CATHEDRAL

The need is always with us
what is needed also there
Bruckner built cathedrals
careless of his congregations
who might come later in the spaces
empty at the building

There were others building and more fortunate
so they thought a populace around them
to congratulate a need ful
lled
so they thought
the taste turned dull with time
a blade that darkened and no longer cut

Later there were those who entered
not quite trusting where they were
the silences of what was left
a need in part ful
lled.

A sheltering
as a sheltering is never
nished
it is a structure incomplete
wards off the rain and yet the rain seeps in
the structure rises and obscures what was open
sheltering a view arcane a beginning
seems to be is not complete
pediment to spout a gargoyle
to divert the rain and still seeps in
a water which returns is never
nished
cathedral passes in the midst of being
builded of no
nished stone
is not to be its
nite ending
coming late as the builders sensing
what their forebears could not
concerned with building on a ground not solid
what might seem to be
a business that outlasts its tools
in ruins of a sky around it
a shelter for the moment but outlasting it.

The stones of many shapes the stones of being
close to the source the ground once chosen
as a ground for building cornerstone well placed
should not be taken from its place needs only
that another stone should reach it a congener
in shape and size a stone of being
others from a similar ground aligned and placed
as relatives to what is already there erratic
the builder sorts them always aware
that what he builds is larger than himself
extreme humility accorded both stone and tools
nothing to be scanted surprises in the ordinary
the effect is natural to become effective
hard to de
ne the boundings what is built
has been there found by one who picks it up
miscalculation that the stones may not rise
their weight denies them and a ruin stays
as what must remain un
nished open as a shelter
to what is alien in the structure jackdaws
piling in their nests a distant fancy.

Bruckner did not know
beyond the stones he lifted into place
that surety in their falling might be haphazard
not sure there in the false step
it is not a step to avoid the builder stumbles
fortuitous in mis stepping the many steps that wind
they take the breath away from the building
these are the strands of faith what is believed
belief is for the builder what he builds
is more than any faith no longer his
he moves away incredulous
his single faith is not enough he did it
all that should be known not knowing
apart from what was imagined not the cathedral
the builder owns no power it
ows through
beyond him subsides in what is built
it stands aside careless of its means
not to be remembered the structure as is
Bruckner did not know what he had built
a cathedral is never
nished

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