sábado, 7 de noviembre de 2015



Clay Matthews. Poeta EE.UU.,  ha publicado Pretty, Rooster (Cooper Dillon, 2010). Enseña en el Tusculum College y actualmente reside en Greeneville, Tennessee.

Una historia de alcoba

Tabaco de pipa y el paso de las nubes.
Las pequeñas promesas de la clavícula
y tejas de cedro. ¿Ha pasado tanto tiempo
desde que no dije nada? Mis días están llenos
de palabras sin sentido y la sonrisa de un
niño. Poco de lo que hago
es importante, pero tal vez las formas
lo son. Los cuervos fuera se bañan
en las cunetas, la extraña necesidad
de celebrar una comparecencia
y asentir con la cabeza en las cenas.
Que si me equivoqué, que si  he entendido mal...
Una letanía de manchas que se ven
a través de las camisetas blancas y las manos.
Lo que sale en el lavado son las tardes
y la arena de la caja de arena, la migración
de playas a patios interiores, patios interiores
a los extremos de las líneas de drenaje y la imaginación:
¿lo que lo hacen las ondas en mis sueños
de dónde viene? A veces te escucho
cantar allí. Tú me invitaste a hablar,
y yo aullé. Me pediste que me diera la vuelta,
me hice el muerto. Aparezco a tu lado
en la cama con una docena de malos símiles sobre el amor.
No me preguntes qué significan, o si
estoy cada vez más, no sé. Solo la farola
que entra y sale detrás de las cortinas,
nuestras sombras haciendo sombras
en la pared. Tus ojos se fueron graves
en el sonido de mi voz, mientras te leo
estas cosas que otros han escrito.

*Traducción de Ana Gorría

A Bedtime Story

Pipe tobacco and the passing of clouds.
The small promises of collarbones
and cedar shingles. Has it been so long
since I’ve really said anything? My days are filled
with meaningless words and the child’s
laughter. Little of what I do
is important, but maybe the ways
are. The crows outside bathing
in the gutters, the strange necessity
of holding up an appearance
and nodding our heads at dinner parties.
If I misspoke, if I misunderstood…
A litany of the stains that show
through on white T-shirts and hands.
What comes out in the wash are afternoons
and sand from the sandbox, a migration
of beaches to backyards, backyards
to the bottoms of sewer lines and imaginations:
what shore do the waves in my dreams
arrive from? Sometimes I hear you
sing there. You bade me speak,
and I howled. You bade me roll over,
and I played dead. I show up beside you
in bed with a dozen bad similes about love.
Don’t ask me what they mean, or if
I am ever         —I don’t know. Only the streetlight
coming in and out behind the curtains,
our shadows making shadows
on the wall. Your eyes gone heavy
at the sound of my voice, reading you
these things others have written.

An Angel Gets Her Wings

On television there’s an old movie about a ghost
that’s come to change a man’s life.

Next door the little girl howls
while her parents fight over a lost pipe.

The days are punctuated by street corners
and looking out windows,

the nights by deadbolts and Christmas lights.
Yesterday we had the Sweet Gum 

tree in the front yard cut back,
leaving what we thought would survive.

To persist: a yellowed crack rock
in a sandwich bag, a fifth anniversary

party, a broken branch hanging down
still putting out a flower and leaves.

My daughter, two, flaps her arms
like wings and cries out: I can’t fly.

The dark sounds, she says, owls
in the night, a train in the distance;

she believes so deeply in the moon.
If you are good, the season will reward you

with ribbons and bows. If you are bad,
it’s all branches and blesséd stones.

Semis bounce down the road, and I never know
what they’re hauling. A choir of angels, maybe.

A load of pallets—worthless, except
to hold some heavy burden and raise it up.

The radio plays all the songs we know, 
the wreaths encircle the front doors.

From the bridge on television, the water looks
cold and beautiful. From the water

the windows look warm and full of song.
I want to wrap the little girl next door up

in a blanket and lay her under the tree.
But I don’t know where to begin.

“ ‘An Angel Gets Her Wings’ is a poem about neighbors and neighborhoods. There’s a playground in one neighbor’s backyard where my daughter plays, often with another neighbor’s child about the same age. At some point during the holiday season last year, everyone had gone to bed and I was up watching It’s a Wonderful Life alone. I don’t think I’d ever really felt much about that movie until then—being older, having a child, thinking about flying and the past and regret and hope and indecision. Somewhere in the midst of all that I got that warm fuzzy feeling when you feel this peace in knowing things ought to change. I wished I could keep everyone in the world warm right then, especially the little girl next door, the friend of my daughter. ”

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