Wednesday, November 14, 2012

between what I see and what I say




for Roman Jakobson

1

Between what I see and what I say,
Between what I say and what I keep silent,
Between what I keep silent and what I dream,
Between what I dream and what I forget:
poetry.
It slips
between yes and no,
says
what I keep silent,
keeps silent
what I say,
dreams
what I forget.
It is not speech:
it is an act.
It is an act
of speech.
Poetry
speaks and listens:
it is real.
And as soon as I say
it is real,
it vanishes.
Is it then more real?

2

Tangible idea,
intangible
word:
poetry
comes and goes
between what is
and what is not.
It weaves
and unweaves reflections.
Poetry
scatters eyes on a page,
scatters words on our eyes.
Eyes speak,
words look,
looks think.
To hear
thoughts,
see
what we say,
touch
the body of an idea.
Eyes close,
the words open.





~ Octavio Paz (1914-1998),
from A Tree Within, (Poems 1976-1987)






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