della mutabilità

I poeti della domenica #103: Jo Shapcott, La Serenissima


La Serenissima

Ero sulla terra, ma la terra non apparteneva
più al mondo, le era concesso poggiare
qua e là su zolle galleggianti.
Il marciapiedi ondeggiava sotto le mie scarpe.
Tutto quel che vedevo apparteneva all’acqua:
liquide chiese, e teatri, monumenti, case,
liquido sole e cielo. Le mie mani vagavano
nell’acqua, raccoglievano acqua. La faccia rivolta

alle nuvole. Sentivo le membrane
del mio corpo tremare per il fluido
che contengono, e il flusso maestoso della linfa,
il pulsare accelerato del sangue. Il motore di una barca
vibrò attraverso la terra, le onde, i miei piedi
fin dentro il mio petto. Lenta – lentamente, salii a bordo.


La Serenissima

I was on land, but the land didn’t belong
to earth any more, was allowed to rest
in floating patches here and there.
The pavement rippled under my shoes.
Everything I could see belonged to water:
liquid churches, theatres, monuments, houses,
liquid sun and sky. My hands wandered
into water, cupped water. My face turned

towards rainclouds. I could feel the membranes
in my body tremble with the fluid
they contain, and the stately flow of lymph,
the faster pulse of blood. A boat’s engine
vibrated through land, through waves, through my feet
into my torso. Slow – slowly moving, I stepped on.


Jo Shapcott, La Serenissima, da Della mutuabilità, Del Vecchio Editore, 2015; traduzione di Paola Splendore

Jo Shapcott, due poesie da Della mutabilità e una nota di lettura

14463668113859-shapcottJo Shapcott, Della mutabilità, (traduzione di Paola Splendore), Del Vecchio editore, 2015, € 15,00


Religion for Girls

Just now, we need as many as we can get.
Myself, I’d like an underground goddess
to supervise the tube, to watch the drains.
A god for airlines, one for dodgy builders
and one for children’s breath. But we’ve got this,
a temple filled with marble body parts:
the giant hand with which Mithras killed the bull;
Minerva’s head, her helmet lost, her wisdom
leaking out; a tiny Mercury too small to dash
between earth and paradise, stuck chatting here;
a local London genius for this and that;
an elderly god for the Thames, lying down;
a mother goddess, unnervingly, powerfully plump;
a god from Egypt for the underworld;
Bacchus for giving sparky life. And all,
all of these gods and bits of gods left here
to chew over the wandering mortals of London,
as we chant our Evening Standards to ourselves
in our stalled commuter trains, curse under breath
at traffic jams, high rises, shopping centres
and go about our business following
the invincible sun from east to west.