False Translation of “Hunger,” Rimbaud, A Season in Hell
If it’s the gout, it’s not the war
that pours to the earth like clowns
in June, the troubadours of the air,
of rock, of Charybdis, of fear.
These amuse, turn about. Prance, tickle.
Prey on the children
until the cats come,
with whom they have an appointment.
Many the caterwauls, for the sake of the bruise.
Small hairs are fooling the egglets.
Winds are older than floodings,
pain always dancing in the greasy valley.
The winding one is birthed under the fumes.
In the cradle, his belly grows plumage
of the old ways, of flight:
come to the luau. We’ll take a taste
do it with the lettuces and fruits.
No one’s watching what you do with the blade.
How you lay your pubic hairs
not tangled among the violets.
What a sleep! What a stew!
By the axes of Solomon,
gold bouillon cuts below the ruddiness,
and the honey sinks to silt.
Author Discusses Poems