Monday, June 15, 2015

"I am the first" by Paul Celan

I found this short poem of Celan in The Vintage Book of Contemporary World Poetry, edited by J.D. McClatchy:

"I am the first"

I am the first to drink of the blue that still looks for its eye.
I drink from your footprint and see:
you roll through my fingers, pearl, and you grow!
You grow, as do all the forgotten.
You roll:  the black hailstone of sadness
is caught by a kerchief turned white with waving goodbye.

-Translated from German by Michael Hamburger

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