Pebble by Bedri Rahmi Eyüpoğlu

When I think of you
A pebble warms in me
A bird settles on the edge of my heart
A poppy flourishes suddenly
A poppy bleeds insidiously
When I think of you
A plum tree dresses up from top to bottom
Starts to spin hysterically
As it spins, it dissolves bit by bit
As it dissolves, it dwindles
Becomes a deep blue plum in my mouth
Its seed has just sprouted
My lips burn when I touch
When I think of you
A pebble warms in me

translated by Burak Tıraş

Love Poem by Ron Padgett

We have plenty of matches in our house.
We keep them on hand always.
Currently our favorite brand is Ohio Blue Tip,
though we used to prefer Diamond brand.
That was before we discovered Ohio Blue Tip matches.
They are excellently packaged, sturdy
little boxes with dark and light blue and white labels
with words lettered in the shape of a megaphone,
as if to say even louder to the world,
“Here is the most beautiful match in the world,
by its one and a half inch soft pine stem capped
by a grainy dark purple head, so sober and furious
and stubbornly ready to burst into flame,
lighting, perhaps, the cigarette of the woman you love,
for the first time, and it was never really the same
after that. All this will we give you.”
That is what you gave me, I
become the cigarette and you the match, or I
the match and you the cigarette, blazing
with kisses that smoulder toward heaven.

Absence by Pablo Neruda

I have scarcely left you
when you go in me, crystalline,
or trembling,
or uneasy, wounded by me
or overwhelmed with love, as when your eyes
close upon the gift of life
that without cease I give you.

My love,
we have found each other
thirsty and we have
drunk all the water and the blood,
we have found each other
hungry
and we bit each other
as fire bites,
leaving wounds in us.

But wait for me,
keep for me your sweetness,
I will give you too
a rose.

translated by Donald D. Walsh

continued from I want to write different words for you by Nizar Kabbani

Take all the books
That I read in my childhood,
Take all my school notebooks,
Take the chalk
The pens,
And the blackboards,
But teach me a new word
To hang like an earring
On my lover’s ear.

I want new fingers
To write in a new way,
Like high masts of ships,
Long like a giraffe’s neck
So I can tailor for my beloved
A garment of poetry.

I want to make you a unique alphabet.
In it I want
The rhythm of the rain,
The dust of the moon,
The sadness of the grey clouds,
The pain of the fallen willow leaves
Under the wheels of autumn.

translated by Bassam K. Frangieh & Clementina R. Brown