Sunday, 11 October 2009


By Doris Kareva


Life is not a story,
life is creation.

Is it true that we are given
all that we wish for?

Is it true that we are given
all that we deserve?

Is it true that we are overtaken
by all that we avoid?

Time, you fleeting one,
raker of surprises --

life is not a story,
just hope and creation.


Every thought that is thought to the end
becomes a butterfly, freeing itself.

Like a breaker falling on the springtime.

This storm
that you breathe, heart from top to toe.


Of love and death,
of debts, karma and dharma
I thought that morning too,
in my breath
as I held your back, your shoulder,
your sleep and the pulsing hours
until the operation.


Remind me what life is like
without memory, without fire —
a cave in a grey dawn coma,
a wound that doesn't hurt
although it suppurates.
(An absurd moloch, yes,
but methodical.)

Remind me that life is an arc,
not logical.


I age into beauty,
free of the buckle of hope
that thrashed my youth
with disillusionment’s belt.

Pain is the fear of pain.
Fear is the fear of fear.
The base of all pyramids is
the moment.


As you lean into that awesome abyss
your word falls like a stone
from the hurting, juicy
throbbing heart of life's fruit.

The circles fade and grow weaker.
And from the truth-soil a tree will arise,
as a picture darkening amidst flames
may give birth to sparks.


“Beauty is bounty,
balance is wisdom,
thought is deed,
truth is power.”

Simpler polishing
on a hunchback stone
is made only by water's
wordless tomb.

The Greek word moira (μοῖρα) literally means a part or portion, and by extension one's portion in life or destiny.

translated from Estonian by David McDuff

No comments: