Wednesday, April 14, 2010

a poem by henrik nordbrandt

and yes. he's danish. like hamlet.

No Matter Where We Go

No matter where we go, we always arrive too late
to experience what we left to find.
And in whatever cities we stay
it is the houses where it is too late to return
the gardens where it's too late to spend a moonlit night
and the women whom it's too late to love
that disturb us with their intangible presence.

And whatever streets we think we know
take us past the gardens we are searching for
whose heavy fragrance spreads throughout the neighborhood.
And whatever houses we return to
we arrive too late at night to be recognized.
And in whatever rivers we look for our reflections
we see ourselves only when we have turned our backs.

Translated from the Danish by the author and Alexander Taylor

Nordbrandt, Henrik. "No Matter Where We Go" The Vintage Book of Contemporary World Poetry. New York: Vintage Books, 1996.