“I’m more and more convinced that poetry and life are incompatible, like in Tonio Kröger. I am now like Tonio Kröger in the storm, I have just gone out to the shore, and am still living acts that I don’t know how to translate into words.

 “Maybe, who knows, the time for words is gone forever.” From a letter written to Vittorio Sereni, poet and great friend, on August 13, 1935. Antonia Pozzi would take her life only three years later, on December 3, 1938.

Desiderio di cose leggere  

Antonia Pozzi

Giuncheto lieve biondo
come un campo di spighe
presso il lago celeste
e le case di un’isola lontana
color di vela
pronte a salpare –
Desiderio di cose leggere
nel cuore che pesa
come pietra
dentro una barca –
Ma giungerà una sera
a queste rive
l’anima liberata:
senza piegare i giunchi
senza muovere l’acqua o l’aria
salperà – con le case
dell’isola lontana,
per un’alta scogliera
di stelle –
The desire for light things  

Antonia Pozzi  

Light blond reed bed
like a field of wheat
near a light blue lake
and the homes of a distant island
the color of sails
ready to set out to sea―
The desire for light things
in a heart as heavy
as stone
inside a boat―
But a freed soul
will come one night
to these shores:
without bending the reeds
without moving the water or the air
it will set sail―with the homes
of the distant island,
for a high cliff
of stars―  

Translation ©Matilda Colarossi 2021

The poem, written on February 1, 1934, is from the collection Parole by Antonia Pozzi


You can buy Antonia Pozzi’s work here: https://www.garzanti.it/libri/antonia-pozzi-tutte-le-opere-9788811679394/

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

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