PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
Most Read... Rebecca WattsThe Cult of the Noble Amateur
(PN Review 239)
Mark FordLetters And So It Goes
Letters from Young Mr Grace
(aka John Ashbery)

(PN Review 239)
Kei Millerthe Fat Black Woman
In Praise of the Fat Black Woman & Volume

(PN Review 241)
Henry Kingon Toby Martinez de las Rivas
(PN Review 244)
Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Vahni CapildeoOn Judging Prizes, & Reading More than Six Really Good Books
(PN Review 237)
Next Issue Bill Manhire, Warm Ocean and other poems David Rosenberg, On Harold Bloom: Poetry, Psyche, God, Mortality Frederic Raphael, Obiter Dicta Gwyneth Lewis, The Auras Vahni Capildeo, Odyssey Response
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
PNR 250 Poetry Archive Banner
Monthly Carcanet Books
PN Review Blog

This poem is taken from PN Review 120, Volume 24 Number 4, March - April 1998.

Eleven Poems Oktay Rifat

Translated by Christopher Middleton

How the Poem Comes

She comes from the table of foam,
naked, green she brings
from the deep, yellow with mud she comes
dragging dead sea birds to the coffee house
where divers drink, comes
like a cut-throat wind from the south,

She comes breaking her maidenhood
with a speed of thought and dizzying, comes
tired, cupping her hands to beggar folk
with the strangled cry of a halfwit.


The Traces

1

Mind blank in the thick of things
perhaps can start when water slides away
from water, to revert
...


Searching, please wait... animated waiting image