POETRY: Jürgen Rooste

A SONG ABOUT LIFE, THAT SHORT LITTLE THING
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(c) Jüri J Dubov
Translated by Adam Cullen

Oh, life – that creature –
ran past us and by us in a flash.
Trees grew and were chopped down
houses were built and asphalt roads
were laid there.

The snotty-nosed neighborhood
children grew up
and still didn't understand anything.
Or vice versa: they understood every
single thing, and that's why they kept quiet.

But you – life – were still short,
and my love for you was
that much greater. Such were my thoughts,
sipping my indignantly bitter tea from a paper cup
as a jackhammer ravenously penetrated
a stone surface somewhere behind the wall.

Everything happened – people did work
and some of them were even happy.
Maybe even we,
but it's still an entirely different sensation
to be happy together – not just
somewhere in this immense universe
concurrently.

And children were born, they were birthed,
put into daycares, from which they were left
with glowing memories.
Sent to school, from which even brighter ones came .
The smell of the cafeteria, of the gym, of the lavatory.
No one really called it the "lavatory".

Life, I love you
because there's nothing better.

I am a blemish on your filthy canvas,
I bet it all on a happy ending.


*
Love is like the Higgs boson.
Many believe it exists.
There are some, who claim they have
seen or measured it.
One might suspect some of them are lying.
Or are seeing Godknowswhat.

Love is like the Higgs boson:
it should give our life's elementary particles
mass. Mass, or a point in the very least.
But we'll never find it, hard as we might look,
won't ever point it out precisely and with certainty
before ourselves and our God: ah, look –
now here's that Higgs boson; here and
in this moment lies the sole, eternal and true love.

Yeah, it's sort of like with God; just a bit
like with life itself – one must believe,
and it clings together; then it has mass and a reason.
Most of all a reason.

If one doesn't believe, everything goes to pieces and
vanishes back into its initial state, like a sand castle
built by a child on Miami Beach. As an old star
dispersing into a cloud of fog in the cosmic cold.

Of course, this will all disappear anyway, in any case.
There's no escaping it, and the name of the card that
we pull from the grim pack of living
is Death;
which means not an end, but a change –
an irreversible transformation. Inevitible,
but not necessarily hellish.

Yeah, the Higgs boson and love are somewhat similar,
there will always be people that don't believe in them,
there will always be the possibility they won't be found,
won't be measured,
which doesn't make them less existent if we very much need
that existence.




DARWIN AND THE MOON
Translated by Adam Cullen

when Darwin looked at the Moon
and saw and knew
just what we see
and know
might his gaze
have searched there
between the moon-seas and moon-mountains
for moon-cities and moon-villages
upon which flashed the thought
of how moon-evolution transpired
what that rocky nature
had chosen
whether there might be gods up there
and hope
for a better future
yes – what did Darwin think

looking up from a Galapagos island
at the blood-red full moon







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