Floral Moloch. By Helena Santic Isakov. Translated with Charles Elffers.

I see the faded plant in a crucifix,

not a sanctity;

and immediately hear a Vandal leader in full thrust:

in love, advancing with petals resembling people,

at that moment when he saw

that nothing in her was supernatural;

the music itself was superficial;

an echo of some inner harp,

so then he tried to sustain the question:

whether the creation was latent illness

or mere hopelessness and futility.

I see an absolutely faded leaf on a fed plant

and am rotting in despair

without home or my dear ones,

but even Helderlin should settle down here.

How come that all I can create is dreams

and the shame, which i buried each night in a comical way.

My present and future is the 6th century BC,

and ancestor a nonexistent son of Sappho,

while the crucified one ran away from an embrace;

only the dry land remained for the faded plant.

Fro time immemorial

deaths are the charms of familiar plants,

as if you decay separately from your bones.


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