In memoriam, the Spanish poet Francisco Brines
Francisco Brines, receiving at his home Elca, Oliva
from the Spanish king and queen the Cervantes Prize, 12th May 2021
Elca and Montgó *
To Angelika Becker
The dark death of the orange trees
blinds my eyes;
orange and dry, rises the moon
behind a sea of lead.
In the distance, the mountain breathes blue air;
the sea wets it, in its slumber. And so the shadow falls,
for centuries, over the ache of its roughness.
The houses open their eyelids,
the hillside lights up, trembling,
the heart yearns for beings it does not know;
and other beings return to remembrance.
Invisible, an air of jasmine
penetrates my shirt, from my flesh it lifts
light sweat; and this blown dust
is lost in the night,
deaf gravedigger of my time.
It was the merciful day,
and to the worn-out earth, grateful,
I look lovingly,
for the gentleness with which I die today.
Francisco Brines, Spain (1932─2021)
Translation Germain Droogenbroodt – Stanley Barkan
* Elca, name of Brines house, Montgo, mountain range, seen from his house