AMBIENTE PER UN DRAMMA

from Inediti

Dino Campana

 

 

Sera d’estate.

Costeggiò l’Arno illuminato dai fanali tenendo la bambina per mano, traversò il ponte che metteva nella città magnificamente illuminata, coronata dai contorni graziosi e neri dei suoi alti palazzi e delle sue torri e penetrarono nella sala. Due orientali giovani brune e nude erano intorno a un bracere che dava fumi rossastri. Le fiamme pallide dei ceri torno torno sui candelabri ne erano impallidite.

Un ventilatore che ronzava in alto agitava il profumo in striscie che si svolgevano e avvolgevano lentamente e ritmicamente nel silenzio reso più profondo dalle forme immobili delle orientali.

Attraverso il profumo ricco leggero ondeggiante appariva tratto a tratto una chitarra solitaria sospesa sui drappi delle pareti. La statua di un arcangelo colla spada in mano, un antico quadro nerastro,

una donna pensierosa, Eva, che porgeva il pomo ai suoi figli, apparivano e sparivano negli sfondi. La bambina si era trovata improvvisamente sola. Si era avvicinata istintivamente allo splendore del bracere e fissava il profumo che nasceva oscillando, mentre il fuoco si scoloriva e si arrossava ancora. Portava gli occhi alle due forme brune e ferine. Il ronzio la stordiva. Le onde che cingevano le due orientali e le si avvicinavano lentamente e magneticamente le portavano un profumo terribile, mistico e soffocante di carne femminile e di fiera che le sollevava i capelli d’angoscia. Oscuri presentimenti in un’altra sua vita le brillavano a tratti nella mente lasciandola cogli occhi sbarrati.

Un suono improvviso e velato di chitarra sorse ad un tratto e la ritenne tutta. Una bruna, distesa ai piedi dell’altra, tentava accordi acerbi e monotoni, lontani e irritanti. L’altra si alzò e ballò colle bande dei suoi capelli in mano che la coronarono come la notte. Si arrestava a tratti col piede avanti, coprendosi del nero padiglione dei suoi capelli, spiando nell’oscurità, chiamando i suoni, e riprendeva la danza nell’ebbrezza funebre lentamente crescente.

Quando gli ultimi accordi secchi e acerbi si spensero e le due forme scomparvero la bambina vinta sentì un’amara nostalgia. Si accasciò e chiuse gli occhi abbandonandosi ai suoi sogni. Ed ecco che un angelo bruno dal volto femminile, dalle labbra rosse e gli occhi di velluto si inginocchiò davanti a lei e la baciò. Il suo collo era delicato come di cigno, i suoi capelli portavano l’odore dell’infinito.

I vestiti cadevano dal corpicino acerbo di lei; ella si sentì colla schiena contro il suo petto, le braccia tese, la testa rovesciata sul suo collo e la bocca rosea aperta. I loro capelli ondulati e frammisti scendevano in strette infinite, armoniose come l’ebbrezza delle loro anime. Le pareva di essere trasportata come in un soffio verso cieli lontani e metallici, splendenti dei colori più delicati dei fiori,

e anelava di svanire. Le pareva di sentire il suo cuore cullato da profumi di una potenza magica nella solitudine dell’infinito e aspettava che il suo cuore si addormentasse. Cosa era la vita, cosa era la morte? Le parve di udire un soffio sul suo corpo trasumanato, come l’ultima carezza dei suoi lontani amori di bambina che lasciava sulla terra; le parve di sentire l’angoscia vana [;] delle mani invisibili

in vano tremanti e disperate la richiamavano… e si affondò lentamente, disparve nel nulla, nell’infinita bellezza.

 

SETTING FOR A TRAGEDY

 from Unpublished works

Dino Campana

 

 

A Summer evening.

She coasted the Arno River, alive with headlights. Holding the child’s hand, she crossed the bridge that opened onto the magnificently lit city, crowned in delicate contours, and tall black buildings and towers, and together they entered a hall. Two dark and naked girls, Asian perhaps, stood around a brazier that gave off reddish smoke. The pallid flames of the candles in the candelabras that stood all around were paled by it.

A fan hummed up above, moving the perfume in ribbons that unravelled and ravelled, slowly and rhythmically, in a silence made more profound by the immobile shapes of the Asian girls.

Through the rich, light, wavering perfume a sole guitar, suspended on the wall drapes, appeared and disappeared. The statue of an archangel holding a sword, a darkish ancient painting – a pensive woman, Eve, offering an apple to her children – appeared and disappeared into the background. The girl was suddenly all alone. She was attracted instinctively to the brilliance of the brazier, and stared at the perfume that rose, wavering, while the fire faded and reddened again. She looked up at the two dark, beastly figures. The humming confused her. The waves that swathed the two Asian girls and that moved slowly and magnetically closer to her brought with them a terrible perfume, mystical and suffocating, of flesh, both female and animal, which made her hair stand on end. Obscure presentiments of another life flashed intermittently in her mind, leaving her wide-eyed.

A noise, unexpected and veiled behind the notes of a guitar, sounded suddenly and enfolded her. A dark woman, distended at the feet of another woman, tried playing raw, monotonous chords, distant and upsetting. The other woman jumped to her feet and danced, holding ribbons of hair that swathed her like the night. She stopped suddenly, one foot extended, covering herself with the canopy of black hair as she stared into the darkness, calling to the sounds, and then danced again in the slowly mounting funeral rhapsody.

When the last notes, sharp and raw, were snuffed and the two shapes disappeared, the girl was overwhelmed by a bitter nostalgia. She fell to the ground and closed her eyes, abandoning herself to her dreams. And thus an angel appeared, brown skinned and with the face of a woman, red lips and eyes of velvet. She kneeled before her and kissed her. Her neck was as slender as that of a swan, and her hair smelled of infinity.

Her clothes fell from her unripe body. She could feel her back against the other’s chest, arms outstretched, head rolled back against her neck and her red mouth open. Their hair, in waves intermingling, fell in infinite ribbons, as harmonious as the rhapsody of their souls. She felt as if she were being swept away, gliding towards heavens distant and metallic, shining with the most delicate colours of blossoms, and she could not wait to vanish. She thought she could hear her heart cradled by the scent of a magical power in the solitude of the infinite, and waited for her heart to sleep. What was life? What was death? She thought she could feel a breath of air on her transhumanized body, like the last caress of her distant childhood affections as they left the earth. She thought she could feel the vane anxiety of invisible hands, trembling in vane and in vane desperately calling her back…and she slipped away slowly, disappearing into the nothingness, into the infinite beauty.

 

 

Translation ©Matilda Colarossi

 

From Inediti (unpublished works) collected and edited by Enrico Falqui. – Florence, Vallecchi, and printed posthumously in 1942.

 

 Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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