da Trucioli #38

Camillo Sbarbaro

Ma, ormai, se qualcuno invidio, è l’albero.

Freschezza e innocenza dell’albero! Cresce a suo modo. Schietto, sereno. Il sole, l’acqua lo toccano in ogni foglia. Perennemente ventilato.
Tremolio, brillare del fogliame come un linguaggio sommesso e persuasivo!

Piú che gli uomini, ho in cuore fisionomie d’alberi.
Ci sono alberi scapigliati ed alberi raccolti come mani che pregano. Alberi che sono delicate trine sciorinate; altri, come ceri pasquali. Alberi patriarcali, vasti come case, rotti dalla fatica di spremere per generazione la dolcezza dei frutti.
C’è l’albero di città, grido del verde, unica cosa ingenua del deserto atroce.
Ma piú di ogni cosa altro, due alberi ricordo, che crescevano da un greto di torrente, allato, come svelti fratelli…

Essere un albero, un comune albero…

From Trucioli #38

Camillo Sbarbaro

But, now, if there is anyone I envy, it’s the tree.

The freshness and innocence of the tree! It grows in its own way. Sincere, serene. The sun, the water touch its every leaf. Perennially ventilated.
Trembling, glimmering of foliage like some soft and persuasive language!

More than that of men, in my heart I carry the physiognomy of trees.
There are dishevelled trees and trees that are collected like hands in prayer. Trees that are delicate lace outstretched; and others, Paschal candles. Patriarchal trees, as big as houses, broken from the toil of squeezing for generations the sweetness of their fruit. There is the city tree, a shriek of greenery, the only ingenuous thing in that atrocious desert.
But more than anything else, I remember two trees, which grew on the gravel bed of a rivulet, side by side, like sylphlike brothers…

To be a tree, an ordinary tree…

Translation @Matilda Colarossi 2018

The piece is an excerpt from poem #38 found in the collection, Trucioli, by Camillo Sbarbaro (Mondadori Editore, 1948, pp. 71-72)

There were times when man, the artist mostly, was so troubled by the misery of the times he lived in that he would seek refuge in nature. These are difficult times, times in which hatred abounds, in which wretchedness appears round corners, inadvertently, or almost. It is, I think, time for nature. Let’s plant trees, not hatred. – M.C.

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