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)
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)
Tim Parksin conversation with Natalia Ginzburg
(PN Review 49)
Next Issue Subha Mukherji Dying and Living with De la Mare Carl Phillips Fall Colors and other poems Alex Wylie The Bureaucratic Sublime: on the secret joys of contemporary poetry Marilyn Hacker Montpeyroux Sonnets David Herman Memories of Raymond Williams
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
PNR 250 Poetry Archive Banner
PN Review New Issue

This poem is taken from PN Review 182, Volume 34 Number 6, July - August 2008.

Rue d'Amsterdam (translated by Keith and Rosmarie Waldrop) Jacques Roubaud

Rue d'Amsterdam goes down goes up
Goes up and down it does, my street
I go up or go down Rue d'Amsterdam
Go down go up my Amsterdam Street

We say we go up say we go down
Streets that go up and streets going down
Say it even of hesitant streets
Or streets on absolutely level ground

We go up streets on the macadam
Walk on the sidewalk down the street
So I go down my Rue d'Amsterdam
So I climb my Amsterdam Street

What is it goes down and what goes up
Goes down or not in every street?
Is it the houses that go up and up
Or falling fall toward the bottom of the street?

It's the houses, they go by number
The one on the door that faces the street
...


Searching, please wait... animated waiting image