Silence

by Gottfried Benn, Michael Hofmann | August 2, 2012

Silence,
coming from within:
things past,
tender early associations
ended by death;
also days with table-decorations and fruit-bowls
placed between couples
of unwavering commitment, two flames. 

Silence,
from faraway estates,
preparations for festivities or homecomings:
beating of carpets,
on which, later,
many pairs of feet will shuffle
dotingly and in love. 

Silence,
once endured and in store for strangers,
broken today by a hoarse plea:
“stay by me,
maybe not all that much longer,
too much decay in me,
too much heaviness,
fatigue.”

Translated by Michael Hofmann

 

Source URL: http://www.newrepublic.com//article/books-and-arts/105660/silence