March 7th, 2010

Poem of the Right Angle

E.3 Caractères
Poème de l’Angle droit by Le Corbusier

Catégorique angle droit du caractère
de l’esprit du coeur!
Je me suis miré dans ce caractère
et m’y suis trouvé, trouvé chez moi
trouvé,
Regard horizontal devant des flèches.
C’est elle qui a raison règne.
Elle détient la hauteur, ne le sait pas.
Qui l’a faite ainsi, d’où vient-elle?
Elle est la droiture enfant au coeur limpide présente sur terre près de moi. Actes humbles et quotidiens sont garants de sa grandeur.

January 9th, 2010

Lost in the Forest

Lost in the Forest

I’d given up hope. Hadn’t eaten in three
days. Resigned to being wolf meat …
when, unbelievably, I found myself in
a clearing. Two goats with bells
round their necks stared at me:
their pupils like coin slots
in piggy banks. I could have gotten
the truth out of those two,
if goats spoke. I saw leeks
and radishes planted in rows;
wash billowing on a clothesline …
and the innocuous-looking cottage
in the woods with its lapping tongue
of a welcome mat slurped me in.

In the kitchen, a woman so old her sex
is barely discernible pours a glass
of fraudulent milk. I’m so hungry
my hand shakes. But what is this liquid?
“Drink up, sweetheart,” she says,
and as I wipe the white mustache
off with the back of my hand:
“Atta girl.” Have I stumbled
into the clutches of St. Somebody?
Who can tell. “You’ll find I prevail here
in my own little kingdom,” she says as
she leads me upstairs—her bony grip
on my arm a proclamation of ownership,
as though I’ve always been hers.

Lost in the Forest by Amy Gerstler

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