POEM: Enver Ali Akova

The Autobiography of the Past
translated by Melih Levi

It all happened so fast
There was no more doubt about what we had
Nor something to doubt.
A plain state of silence and darkness. In fact,
our struggle to color this, to think about this state,
is how we wasted away. Icarus, smashed right
in the middle of an otherwise-serene order.

Why is it that we spoil like a fruit?
The melting of the rocks which split the stream into two, or more
with artificial ticktocks, should one call this natural
(what is natural and does not spoil?)?
Remembering and shadow feel senselessly identical
When one sees the mother the first word; mother . . .

Even remembering was senseless, we were in a limbo.
Rocking on a squeaky bus, elderly people going onstage
in elderly roles, yes they are scared, but will they stay
in character after they die?

Enver Ali Akova is a Turkish poet.

Melih Levi studies English modernism and its immediate aftermath to think about the philosophical stakes of symbolism, imagism, and mid-centutry formalisms.

Poem translaton first published in Dibur Literary Journal (Creative Commons).

Photo by Sandy Millar (Unsplash).

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