But in the myth, at the beginning of our world
matter (god x)
wants to remain asleep.
He (it is a he) resists arousal. A war ensues. A truce (us) (now)
and he must marry change (it is a she),
beginning the long unwinding every step ofwhich is now, just now,
curious small house
out of which the great girl turns.
Turn, turn, this is the medicine, it will make you well ….
Where we are now she's done the bright swift part, the coil has long
She's deep into the lateness now,
She's standing in the open ringed with photographs of what
She wants to feel what she sees now.
What she sees is him, the old King.
Her looking over at him words cast against a wall.
The thing we call nothingness the sleep that surrounds him.
The mystery of interval - her push, his refusal - what we call
Here they are now: here is the voice trying to surround
And here: the words trying to awaken
what they would surround.
Will she ever tire of his refusal?
Will he ever wake again and, leaning out, give birth to her
Oh ghost adieu-Thou canst not raise
thy head cool-bedded in the flowery grass -
only it's not grass anymore, is it, but sub-
atomic instances, etcetera - farewell!
Would we awaken him again?
Would we arouse him further from the drowse?
The tree is "green." (This is the medicine)
The dreamy outstretched arm is actually …. (to make you well)
See how she lifts then drops each veil -
is this justice? is this?
A voice is heard behind a door.
Oh what will make him turn, what want can place
Out there: look up into the evening now surrounding
what can you see, what does she have to show
for all the centuries of this undress? patience? desire? the thing called
How long can it go on?
What is there underneath that could at last awaken him - the fear of God?
the explanation of the fear of God?
And after that?
And if she's naked now, then what is there to take off
and then what will Love do?
(1991 by The Ecco Press in New York. By arrangement with HarperCollins Publishers)
Jorie Graham: Region of Unlikeness - Region der Unähnlichkeit. Gedichte Amerikanisch Deutsch übersetzt und mit einem Essay von Werner Hamacher. Basel & Weil am Rhein (Urs Engeler Editor) 2008. 218 S., 28,00 Euro.