divendres, 20 de desembre del 2013

Like touched gardenias

These children are after something, with hooks and cries,
And my heart too small to bandage their terrible faults.
This is the side of a man:  his red ribs,
The nerves bursting like trees, and this is the surgeon:
One mirrory eye----
A facet of knowledge.
On a striped mattress in one room
An old man is vanishing.
There is no help in his weeping wife.
Where are the eye-stones, yellow and valuable,
And the tongue, sapphire of ash.


A wedding-cake face in a paper frill.
How superior he is now.
It is like possessing a saint.
The nurses in their wing-caps are no longer so beautiful;
They are browning, like touched gardenias.
The bed is rolled from the wall.
This is what it is to be complete.  It is horrible.
Is he wearing pajamas or an evening suit
Under the glued sheet from which his powdery beak
Rises so whitely unbuffeted?
They propped his jaw with a book until it stiffened
And folded his hands, that were shaking:  goodbye, goodbye.
Now the washed sheets fly in the sun,
The pillow cases are sweetening.  
It is a blessing, it is a blessing:
The long coffin of soap-colored oak,
The curious bearers and the raw date
Engraving itself in silver with marvelous calm.

Berck-Plage, Sylvia Plath.