martes, 19 de julio de 2016

DIANE SEUSS [18.951]


DIANE SEUSS

Diane Seuss nació en Michigan City, Indiana, EE.UU., en 1956 y se crió en Edwardsburg y Niles, Michigan. Estudió en Kalamazoo College y la Universidad de Western Michigan, donde recibió un título de maestría en trabajo social. Seuss es autora de tres libros de poemas: 

Four-Legged Girl (Graywolf Press, 2015); Wolf Lake, White Gown Blown Open (University of Massachusetts Press, 2010), recipient of the Juniper Prize for Poetry; and It Blows You Hollow (New Issues Press, 1998). 

Trabajó como profesora visitante distinguida MacLean en el departamento de Inglés en la Universidad de Colorado en 2012 y es actualmente escritora en residencia en Kalamazoo College, donde ha permanecido en la facultad desde 1988.


Presentamos cuatro poemas de la norteamericana Diane Seuss (Michigan City, Indiana, 1956), pertenecientes a su más reciente libro four-legged girl (Graywolf Press, 2015), que este 2016 resultó finalista del Pulitzer Prize of Poetry.

Las versiones que presentamos son una traducción conjunta de David Ruano González y Andrea Muriel, nuestra editora.
http://circulodepoesia.com/2016/07/diane-seuss-finalista-del-pulitzer-de-poesia-2016/



¿Recuerdas esa primavera? 
La brisa olía como mezcla de pastel

y a algo de sodomía en el aire. Tal vez era la espirea,
que apestaba a espermatozoides y Pinol. ¿No extrañas aquellos días,
los besos con la boca abierta, los labios hinchados como la vagina de una cierva en primavera?
Vivíamos una vida de obscena angustia e imprudente cleptomanía para el emporio de las sombras de ojos.
Todavía pretendiendo ser chicas, y hetero, usando pantaletas de encaje y botas shit kickers.
Éramos, relativamente hablando, amas de casa.
Pizza precocida y martinis de lichi eran alta cocina.
Tirábamos los platos sucios por la puerta trasera hacia el terreno del ruibarbo.
Saqueábamos los esqueletos de las casas incendiadas en busca de porcelana china.
Sí, todos nuestros platos murieron por inhalación de humo.
¿Recuerdas?, alguien te secuestró y te puso en un prostíbulo
en Virginia del Oeste. No fue tan genial.
Tuve que pedir aventón en un peligroso viaje con el fin de liberarte;
daba zancadas usando aquellas altas botas rojas, todo un conjunto rojo,
completado con una espada enmascarada de sombrilla.
Sí, la valentía era un código de moda.
Tu recuperación requería desprogramarte y un nuevo peinado.
Bouffant-cum-beehive con un tinte azul profundo y mechas doradas.
¿Recuerdas?, ¿conseguimos empleos?
Tú untabas mayonesa sobre las ensaladas de gelatina en la cafetería Amish.
Yo manejaba el camión de fideos de Kowloon.
Mi especialidad era entregar galletas de la fortuna caducadas a los menos afortunados,
pero el trabajo mató el sueño.
¿Todavía te inyectas amnesia, ese sedante, o nostalgia, doble sedante?
Yo tuve una sobredosis hace tiempo y tuve que quedarme en permanente rehabilitación.
La filosofía del tratamiento es despiojarte y afeitarte la cabeza,
haciendo un regalo del tiempo presente.
Me cortaron las uñas hasta llegar a la carne viva así que no usé los diamantes de mis uñas
para arañar mensajes en los cristales de las ventanas.
Sólo tuve un flashback de esa noche en la que masturbamos las cónicas flores púrpuras
que colgaban de la vid de la glicina, ¿o nos agrupamos para fornicar con la floribunda?
El tallo erecto creció contrario a las manecillas del reloj en una escalera ornamental de fuga de novios.
El tiempo fue completamente descorchado.
Condujimos un auto incinerándose en sentido contrario en un camino de un solo sentido.
Chocamos contra un orificio designado únicamente como rampa de salida, ¿recuerdas?



Do you remember that spring? 
The breeze smelled like cake mix

and something in the air of sodomy. Maybe it was the spirea,
which reeks of spermatozoa and Pine-Sol. Don’t you miss those days,
the open-mouthed kisses, lips swollen as deer twats in the springtime?
We lived a life os mutty angst and reckless kleptomania at the eye-shadow emporium.
Still pretending to be girls, and hetero, wearing lacy knickers and shit kickers.
We were, relatively speaking, housewives.
Haute cusine was Bisquick pizza and lychee martinis.
Threw the dirty dishes out the back door into the rhubarb patch.
Plundered the skeletons of burned-down houses for bone china.
Yes, all of our plates died of smoke inhalation.
Remember, somebody kidnapped you and set you up in a whorehouse
in West Virginia. So not cool.
I had to thumb a dangerous ride in order to break you out;
I strode in wearing those tall red boots, a whole red ensemble,
complete with sword masking as parasol.
Yes, gallantry was fashion statement.
Your recovery required deprogramming and a new hairdo
Bouffant-cum-beehive with a Deep blue rinse and gold highlights.
Remember, we got jobs?
You dabbed mayo on the Jell-O salads at the Amish cafetería.
I drove the Kowloon noodle truck.
My specialty was delivering post-date fortune cookies to the less fortunate,
but work kills the dream.
Are you still mainlining amnesia, that downer, or nostalgia, doublé-downer?
I overdosed long ago and got set up in permanent rehab.
The treatment philosophy is de-lousing and head shaving,
making a present of the present tense.
They clip me to the quick so I don’t use my diamond fingernails
to scratch messages into windowpanes.
I just had a flashback to that ninght we jacked off the conical purple flowers
that hung off the wisteria vine, or did we cluster fuck the floribunda?
The Woody stem grew counter clockwise up the ornamental elopement ladder.
Time was all corkscrewed.
We drove an incinerating car the wrong way up a one-way.
Rammed into an orifice designed only as an exit ramp, remember?




No puedo escuchar música, especialmente 
“Lush Life” (fragmento)

“A flower is a lovesome thing” — Strayhorn

Hay una mosca en el amplio, dorado colchón de milenrama,
y una mosca en el centro abierto de la equinácea,

y una mosca en el oxidado clítoris del lirio rosa,
oh el jardín es frondoso con las moscas. Llévame de vuelta

a ese restaurant cubano en Nueva York
durante la huelga de basura, con la puerta envuelta

por moscas, aunque eso no nos detuvo, y nos dimos de comer, uno al otro,
frijoles negros, sus jugos púrpuras en las esquinas

de nuestros labios, y su cabello estaba teñido por las moscas
aunque iridiscente, por momentos, como aquellas alas,

y su sonrisa llena de dientes afilados—sus mordiscos de amor
dolían, y abrían una puerta roja hacia un dolor más profundo,

y presagiaban un golpe final. No importaría
que hubiera tirado su arma aceitosa en East River.

Dejarlo podría matarme, y la palabra de su muerte
podría matarme de nuevo, y después de los frijoles

negros, ese día, podríamos apoyarnos en la rocola
de un bar de mala muerte llamado Red Rose, y pondríamos

el número de una canción que ya no soporto,
y podríamos bailar con nuestras manos en el cabello

del otro, nuestro whiskey suavizado por los labios presionados,
muriendo dentro de nuestras destrozadas y frondosas bocas.




I can’t listen to music, especially 
“Lush Life” (fragment)

“A flower is a lovesome thing” — Strayhorn

There’s a fly on the broad, gold cushion of yarrow,
and a fly on the coneflower’s swollen center,

and a fly on the pink lily’s rusty clítoris,
oh the garden is lush with flies. Takes me back

to that Cuban restaurant in New York
during the garbage strike, the door swathed

in flies, but it didn’t stop us, an we fed each other
black vean, their purples juices in the corners

of our mouths, and his hair was fly-colored
but iridescent, in moments, like their wings,

and his smile full of pointed teeth—his love bites
hurt, and opened a red door to a deeper hurt,

and foreshadowed a killing blow. I wouldn’t matter
that I’d thrown his oily gun into the East River.

Leaving him would kill me, and Word of his dead
would kill me again, and after the black

beans, that day, we would lean against the juke
box in a dive called Red Roses, and we’d poke

the number of a song I can no longer stomach,
and we’d dance with our hands in each other’s

hair, our whiskey-softened lips pressed close,
dying into each other’s smashed lush mouths.




Lavandería golpeada por tornado

La novia murió. La chica enamorada
de las vainas del algodoncillo y de dios,
murió lavando su sombrero de sol.

La bebé nació entre las manos
de niebla y las monjas que falsamente
aseguraban que era china, murieron.

Ella no era china. Tres perros
que peleaban por un hueso robado murieron.
La joven esposa murió con sus pezones puestos

en pañales sucios. La viuda murió
blanqueando las camisas para donación
de su esposo muerto. La dama solitaria

murió ensartada en su soledad;
la mentirosa se pinchó en su mentira. La adolescente
murió contemplando su pulgar

del autoestop. La libertina murió viendo
a su esposo robando ropa hecha espiral
de la secadora. Yo di zancadas sin zapatos

desde los escombros con mi cesta
de mimbre y mi ropa arrugada
habiendo sobrevivido al tornado

de mi estupidez, al embudo
de nubes de mi retorcido deseo.




Laundromat hit by tornado

The bride died. The girl in love
with milkweed pods and god
died laundering her sunbonnet.

The baby born into the hands
of fog and nuns who falsely
claimed she was Chinese died.

She was not Chinese. Three dogs
sparring over a stolen bone died.
Young wife died up to her nipples

in dirty diapers. Widow died
bleaching her dead husband’s
shirts for donation. Lonely lady

died skewered on her loneliness;
liar spiked on her lie. Teenage
girl died contemplating her hitchhike

thumb. Hussy died watching
her husband-stealing clothes spiral
in the dryer. I strode shoeless

from the rubble with my wicker
hamper of folded clothes
having survived the twister

of my foolishness, the funnel
cloud of my warped desire.



Estoy llena de tristeza

Tan llena como un refrigerador en día de paga.

Mis noches están repletas de sueños.
Repletas como la maleta de un esposo que abandona su hogar.

¿Y yo lo abandono o sueño que lo abandoné?

Sueño con una habitación roja y me despierto en una habitación azul.
En la habitación azul un hombre me ofrece un anillo de diamantes de $30,000.
Sus tobillos desnudos se asoman de sus pantalones.
Ponte unos calcetines, le digo, viendo mis propios tobillos desnudos.

Como un árbol pequeño atado a demasiadas campanas de viento
mis falsas esperanzas arrastran una música demente por el vecindario.

Un vecindario en pendiente.
Mi casa se tambalea en esa inclinación.

Estoy repleta de feminidad
como un santo decapitado cuya garganta escupe luz del color de la paja.

Lo sé, soy mujer.
En la enfermería pusieron un triste moño en mi cabello.
Junté evidencia de mi infancia de niña
como una reclusa obsesionada con la recolección de moras.

Mira mi delantal, manchado de púrpura.
Mi vacío balde de hojalata, mis labios púrpuras,
mierda púrpura, como la mierda de un oso al final de la primavera.

La tristeza me rodea.
Soy una monarda, un enjambre en mi centro.
Polen pesado en el alambre de sus patas traseras.
Como bombachos de terciopelo dorado.

Soy el chico de la Xerox
afrontando el más grande trabajo de fotocopiado en la historia de los trabajos de fotocopiado.
Reproduciendo la tristeza original,
el cartucho de tóner se está agotando.

Cuando preguntaron en la taquilla qué soy,
sólo pude responder soy la que está diciendo esto.
O su homónimo. O su sollozante antónimo.




I’m full of sadness

As full as a refrigerator on pay day.

My nights are packed with dreams.
Jam-packed as a husband-leaving suitcase.

And did I leave him or dream I left him?

I dream of a red room and wake to a blue room.
In the blue room a man is offering me a $30,000 diamond ring.
His bare ankles poke out of the ends of his pants.
Wear some socks, I say, looking down at my own bare ankles.

Like a small tree strung with too many wind chimes
my false hope drags a screwy music through the neighborhood.

A neighborhood on the decline.
My house teetering on an incline.

I’m bursting with femaleness
like a decapitated saint whose throat spews light the color of straw.

I know I’m female.
In the nursery they put a sad bow in my hair.
I gathered evidence of my girlhood
like a recluse obsessed with berry-picking.

Look at my apron, stained purple.
My empty tin bucket, my purple lips,
purple shits, like the shits of a bear in late spring.

Sadness overruns me.
I’m bee balm, a swarm at my center.
Pollen heavy on the wires of their back legs.
Like gold velvet pantaloons.

I am the Xerox boy
tackling the biggest copy job in the history of copy jobs.
Reproducing original sadness,
toner cartridge running low.

When asked at the ticket office what I am,
I can only answer I am what is speaking this.
Or its homonym. Or its sobbing antonym.




***



Toad

The grief, when I finally contacted it 
decades later, was black, tarry, hot,
like the yarrow-edged side roads 
we walked barefoot in the summer. 

Sometimes we’d come upon a toad 
flattened by a car tire, pressed into 
the softened pitch, its arms spread out 
a little like Jesus, and it was now 

part of the surface of the road, part 
of the road’s story. Then there was 
the live toad I discovered under 
the poison leaves of the rhubarb,

hiding there among the ruby stems,
and if you ate those stems raw, 
enough of them, you’d shit yourself
for days. It isn’t easy to catch a living 

thing and hold it until it pees on you
in fear. Its skin was the dull brown 
of my father’s clothes, my grandfather’s 
clothes as he stood behind the barber’s 

chair, clipping sideburns, laying a warm 
heap of shaving cream over a bristly chin, 
sharpening his straight razor and swiping it 
over the foam-covered cheek of my father, 

who often shaved twice a day, his beard 
was so obstinate, even in the hospital bed. 
When I laid a last kiss on his young cheek, 
the scraping hurt my lips. Do you ever 

wonder, in your heart of hearts, 
if God loves you, if the angels love you, 
scowling, holding their fiery swords, 
radiating green light? If your father 

loved you, if he had room to love you, 
given his poverty and suffering, or if 
a coldness had set in, a cold-bloodedness, 
like Keats at the end, wanting a transfusion 

of the reader’s life blood so he could live 
again. Either way, they’re all safely 
underground, their gentleness or ferocity, 
their numb love, and my father’s 

tar-colored hair, and the fibers of his good 
suit softened by wood tannins, 
and grandfather’s glass eye with its 
painted-on mud-colored iris, 

maybe all that’s left of him in that walnut 
box, and Keats and his soft brown clothes, 
and the poets before and after him.
But their four-toed emissary sits 

in my hand. I feel the quickening pulse 
through its underbelly. Hooded eyes, 
molasses-tinged, unexpressive, 
the seam of its mouth glued shut.

Copyright © 2013 by Diane Seuss. Used with permission of the author. This poem appeared in Poem-A-Day on November 19, 2013. Browse the Poem-A-




Jesus, with his cup

The barber, with his mug of warm foam, his badger-hair brush.

My mother and sister and me and the dog, leashed with a measure
of anchor rope, in the hospital parking lot, waving good-bye
to my father from his window on the 7th floor.

Just him and his tumor, rare as the Hope Diamond,
and his flimsy paper cup half-filled with infirmary water.

The lump in my throat, a tea party cup left in the garage all winter,
holding the silver body and wing dust of a dead moth.

The barber, sweeping the day’s worth of hair into the basement,
remembering how he’d traveled to Memorial
to lather the face of the dying man and shave him smooth
in his raised hospital bed and sometimes he shaved the faces
of the dead as a favor to the mortician.

Wondering how this particular life was the life that had been chosen for him.

The barber, walking home in the dark
to a late supper of torn bread in a cup of heavy cream.

Even the mayor’s wife sipping from a teacup
wreathed in Banded Peacock butterflies wonders, in her loneliness,
why me? Why this cup?

Diane Seuss, “Jesus, with his cup” from Four-Legged Girl. Copyright © 2015 by Diane Seuss. Used with permission of Graywolf Press,




Song in My Heart

If there’s pee on the seat it’s my pee,
battery’s dead I killed it, canary at the bottom
of the cage I bury it, like God tromping the sky
in his undershirt carrying his brass spittoon,
raging and sobbing in his Hush Puppy house
slippers with the backs broke down, no Mrs.
God to make him reasonable as he gets out
the straight razor to slice the hair off his face,
using the Black Sea as a mirror when everyone
knows the Black Sea is a terrible mirror,
like God is a terrible simile for me but like
God with his mirror, I use it.





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