Thursday, October 6, 2011

Another Great Poet

Tomas Transtromer, the great Swedish poet, has just been awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Literature.

The Academy cited his "condensed, translucent images" as giving us "fresh access to reality."

Sounds about right.

Here's a seasonally appropriate poem from Transtromer's 1958 collection, Secrets on the Way, and translated by Robin Fulton in 1987's Selected Poems (edited by Robert Hass):

Weather Picture

The October Sea glistens coldly
with its dorsal fin of mirages.

Nothing is left that remembers
the white dizziness of yacht races.

An amber glow over the village.
And all the sounds in slow flight.

A dog's barking is a hieroglyph
painted in the air above the garden

where the yellow fruit outwits
the tree and drops of its own accord.

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