Original poem by Mario Benedetti
Translation by Lupe Eyde-Tucker
All the areas of my life have something of you
and in truth, that is not extraordinary
you know it as objectively as I.
Nonetheless, there is something I’d like to clarify,
when I say all the areas
I am not referring to what is now
to this waiting for you and hallelujah finding you
and dammit losing you
and finding you again
and hopefully nothing more.
I am not referring to your suddenly saying, I’m going to cry
and with a discreet knot in my throat I say, all right then cry
and that a lovely invisible downpour saves us
and perhaps that’s why the sun immediately shines.
Neither do I only refer to that, day after day,
the stock of our small and decisive complicities grows
or that you tenderly give me the gift of your most recent despair.
No. This thing is much more serious.
When I say all of the areas
I mean that, in addition to that sweet catastrophe,
you are also rewriting my childhood,
that age in which one says adult and solemn things
and the solemn adults celebrate it,
and you, however, know that won’t do.
I mean to say that you are rebuilding my adolescence,
that time when I was an old man full of apprehension,
and instead, you know to extract from that wasteland,
my seed of joy and with your gaze, water it.
I mean to say that you are shaking out my youth,
that pitcher that no one ever laid hands on,
that shadow that no one ever leaned their shadow against,
and you instead know how to make it shudder
until the dry leaves start to fall,
leaving the framework of my truth, without accomplishment.
I mean that you are embracing my maturity
this mixture of stupor and experience,
this strange confine of anguish and snow,
this sparkplug that fires up death,
this cliff of the empoverished life.
As you can see, it’s more serious,
much more grave,
Because with these and with other words
I mean that you are not only,
the beloved girl that you are,
but also the splendid or wary women
that I have wanted or love.
Because thanks to you, I have discovered
(you’d say it’s about time, and with reason)
that love is a beautiful and generous bay
that brightens and darkens,
depending on how life passes,
a bay where boats come and go,
they arrive with birds and anticipation,
and leave with sirens and storm clouds.
A beautiful and generous bay,
where boats come and go.
do not go.
Overlooking Casco Bay, Maine.