The Brilliance of Brutal Obscurity

I translated the following poem for my Translation of Chilean and Spanish Poetry class. It is by Homero Aridjis, a poet and journalist who abides in Mexico. The process of translating is one frought with many challenges, a reality that is manifold for poetry. I am in debt to the professor for certain aspects of this translation. I accept, however, all responsibility for any shortcomings or failures.

I am enjoying translating poetry as it pushes me to connect more deeply with what I am reading, and it sparks my imagination for possibilities that I might pursue in my own writing. I can imagine that translation will be a regular part of my life, perhaps as a creative discipline to sharpen my own skills and expand my creative repertoire. Whatever the future may hold for me and translation, in the present I hope you enjoy this poem.

You enter the dark room
as on a bed of dreams

a corner of unclear light
the rigid rhythm
of quiet terror

the brilliance of brutal obscurity
in black on black

on shadow is shadow
a Babel of tongues
bewildered and in shadows

all say the name of the impalpable
all look and weigh
the unseen

One Response to “The Brilliance of Brutal Obscurity”

  1. WaltDe  

    Keep up the great work on your blog. Best wishes WaltDe