Deja 2000
Translated by Larisa Schultz ©


Impossible! Spring's at the gate!
The lightning shines like a spoon-bait.
The height roars like a firing squad.
Where have I looked, oh God?

The folks have to the forests gone.
Your time has come, oh gnat! Come on!
Grow, nettles! Now it's time to spread! 
But I have slept like mad.

While sinking in the quivering stream
Of drowsiness, I had a dream.
To court I rode from my exile.
That's not a lucky sign!

The path was empty, clean and clear, 
but from the bushes jumped a hare 
and kicked me off my thoroughfare.
Oh no! How could you, hare?

I tell my soul: wake up, old hag.
"Deja, deja" - it answers back.
But what's the point, if it's been years 
since you saw stars, shed tears?

The voice is false, the feet askew.
The teeth much less than thirty-two.
The years went likewise down the drain.
Oh youth! Where is your trail?

To open windows wide and yell:
it's spring, it's spring! Impossible!
The rope gets tighter round one's neck.
That's it. Well, what the heck.

A friend of mine from days bygone,
tight-lipped you are in lands beyond.
Why don't you phone me once a day,
so I don't fade away. 

Phone me to lie, to whisper "love",
phone any time - sleep's not my stuff.
For lies I won't be mad at you.
I am a liar, too.

So don't believe the liar's tune.
He never did howl at the moon.
He's apt to voice a languid phrase 
to frighten wives and maids.

But he is merry and robust,
and, having ten deft stanzas cast,
is clowning by the window sill: 
it's spring! Impossible...