Featured Poem

Inventory of Places Propitious for Love

There aren’t many.
Spring is much famed, but summer
is better.
And then those cracks the autumn makes
when it mediates with Sundays
in some cities
that are already as yellow as bananas.
Winter blots out many locations:
doorways facing north,
river banks,
public benches.
The outer buttresses
of old churches
sometimes leave gaps
that can be used even when it snows.
But let’s not fool ourselves: low
temperatures and wet winds
hinder everything.
There are bylaws, too, proscribing
caresses (with exemptions made
for particular epidermal areas
– of no interest –
in children, dogs and other animals)
and ‘no touching, danger of ignominy’
can be read on a thousand gazes.
Where to flee, then?
Everywhere, crossed eyes,
tortured corneas,
implacable pupils,
reticent retinas
are on the watch, mistrustful, threatening.
Perhaps the last resort is to walk alone,
empty the soul of all tenderness
and fill it with tedium and indifference,
in these hostile times, propitious for hatred.

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About the translation:
Poet:
Ángel González
Translator:
Gonzalo Melchor
Original language:
Spanish
Issue:
2013 Number 3 - Secret Agents of Sense

About the author

Original poet

Ángel González

Ángel González (1925–2008) was one of the major poets of the Spanish generation of 1950. In his lifetime he published eleven c...

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