I become light; you become light; Neither are you from you, nor I from me; we have ripened into one blood…
—One dead, how will death be split into two corpses?
—It is one corpse.
—What if the kin fought to fill two dust holes with one dust gathered by love in the prostration of passion?
—Soft is the clay step in the clay; beneath us the earth gathers into a carpet, dust flinging upon dust; and in the passion prostration the blood of the man prostrating does not reveal the blood of the woman prostrator; one blood runs aground in the darkness of the earth beneath the hand of God, then tossed by the wind in the hand of omnipotence; it rises lightly, taking its course in the radiant mystery of its nocturnal journeys, largely, as the frame of the universe exacts, narrower than the sigh of spirit in spirit.
Between heavens and earth the wind was tempted by us, for it steps along our steps, and we step along its steps…
Who buys my thoughts Buys not a cup of honey That sweetens every taste; He buys the throb, Of Young Africa’s soul, The soul of teeming millions, Hungry, naked, sick, Yearning, pleading, waiting.
Buys not false pretence Of oracles and tin gods; He buys the thoughts Projected by the mass Of restless youths who are born Into deep and clashing cultures, Sorting, questioning, watching.
Who buys my thoughts Buys the spirit of the age, The unquenching fire that smoulders And smoulders In every living heart That’s true and noble or suffering; It burns all o’er the earth, Destroying, chastening, cleansing.
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 125th birthday.
Life is fleeting, is fleeting and will never return. Listen to my advice: if a rich man promises you a good life, you must accept it. Life is fleeting, fleeting, and not even God will stop it. The best you can do is to enjoy life and forget your sorrows and pains. The days and the years elapse and happiness is elusive. You must not think either of suffering or of virtue: you must fully live your youth.
We present this work in honor of the 135th anniversary of the poet’s death.
The Owl and the Pussy-Cat went to sea In a beautiful pea-green boat: They took some honey, and plenty of money Wrapped up in a five-pound note. The Owl looked up to the stars above, And sang to a small guitar, “O lovely Pussy, O Pussy, my love, What a beautiful Pussy you are, You are, You are! What a beautiful Pussy you are!
Pussy said to the Owl, “You elegant fowl, How charmingly sweet you sing! Oh! let us be married; too long we have tarried: But what shall we do for a ring?” They sailed away, for a year and a day, To the land where the bong-tree grows; And there in a wood a Piggy-wig stood, With a ring at the end of his nose, His nose, His nose, With a ring at the end of his nose.
“Dear Pig, are you willing to sell for one shilling Your ring?” Said the Piggy, “I will.” So they took it away, and were married next day By the Turkey who lives on the hill. They dined on mince and slices of quince, Which they ate with a runcible spoon; And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand, They danced by the light of the moon, The moon, The moon, They danced by the light of the moon.
We present this work in honor of the poet’s 170th birthday.
I wish to leave the world By its natural door; In my tomb of green leaves They are to carry me to die. Do not put me in the dark To die like a traitor; I am good, and like a good thing I will die with my face to the sun
We present this work in honor of Holocaust Remembrance Day.
The generations-old wine has strengthened me in my wanderings. The angry sword of pain and sorrow has not destroyed my treasure.
My people, my faith and my flowering—it has not chained my freedom. From under the sword I’ve cried out: I am a Jew!
The clever twists of Rabbi Akiva, the wis- dom of Isaiah’s words nourishing my thirst and my love, and fought against hate.
The zest of the Maccabbean heroes and Bar Kokhba’s blood boils in mine. From all the burnings at the stake I’ve cried out: I am a Jew!
And may my enemies be pierced by spears, those who are preparing a grave for me. Be- neath the flag of freedom I’ll yet have no end of pleasure. I’ll plant my vineyards and be the architect of my fat. I’ll yet dance on my enemies graves. I am a Jew!
In a white gully among fungus red Where serpent logs lay hissing at the air, I found a kangaroo. Tall dewy,dead, So like a woman, she lay silent there. Her ivory hands, black-nailed, crossed on her breast Her skin of sun and moon hues, fallen cold her brown eyes lay like rivers come to rest And death had made her black mouth harsh and old Beside her in the ashes I sat deep And mourned for her, but had no native song To flatter death, while down the ploughlands steep Dark young Camelli whistled loud and long, ‘Love, liberty and Italy are all.’ Broad golden was his breast against the sun I saw his wattle whip rise high and fall Across the slim mare’s flanks, and one by one She drew the furrows after her as he Flapped like a gull behind her, climbing high Chanting his oaths and lashing soundingly, While from the mare came once a blowing sigh. The dew upon the kangaroo’s white side Had melted. Time was whirling high around, Like the thin woomera, and from heaven wide He, the bull-roarer, made continuous sound Incarnate lay my country by my hand: Her long hot days, bushfires, and speaking rains Her mornings of opal and the copper band Of smoke around the sunlight on the plains. Globed in fire-bodies the meat- ants ran to taste her flesh and linked us as we lay, Forever Australian, listening to a man From careless Italy, swearing at our day. When golden-lipped, the eagle-hawks came down Hissing and whistling to eat of lovely her And the blowflies with their shields of purple brown Plied hatching to and fro across her fur, I burnt her with the logs, and stood all day Among the ashes, pressing home the flame Till woman, logs and dreams were scorched away And native with the night, that land from whence they came.