2016年2月17日 星期三

"Black Cat" by Rainer Maria Rilke

"Black Cat" by Rainer Maria Rilke
A ghost, though invisible, still is like a place
your sight can knock on, echoing; but here
within this thick black pelt, your strongest gaze
will be absorbed and utterly disappear:
just as a raving madman, when nothing else
can ease him, charges into his dark night
howling, pounds on the padded wall, and feels
the rage being taken in and pacified.
She seems to hide all looks that have ever fallen
into her, so that, like an audience,
she can look them over, menacing and sullen,
and curl to sleep with them. But all at once
as if awakened, she turns her face to yours;
and with a shock, you see yourself, tiny,
inside the golden amber of her eyeballs
suspended, like a prehistoric fly.
*
Poems: Rilke contains poems from The Book of Images; New Poems; Requiem for a Friend; Poems, 1906-1926; French Poems; The Life of Mary; Sonnets to Orpheus; The Duino Elegies; Letters to a Young Poet; and an index of first lines.

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