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This poem is taken from PN Review 205, Volume 38 Number 5, May - June 2012.

Four Versions of 'Motets' by Eugenio Montale C.K. Stead
Lo sai: debbo riperderti e non posso

I have to lose you again, you know that -
and that I can't. Like well-aimed blows
whatever's done, whatever's said or shouted,
even this salt fog flooding up from the quays
putting spring in the shade -
they shake me.

Sottoripa, region of iron,
of spar-forests in a dusty twilight -
a long groan comes in from nowhere,
an eternal fingernail on glass.
I look for the lost sign,
for the one pledge freely given -
your gift to me. 
                             And hell is assured.



La speranza di pure rivederti

It was when I saw
under the arcades at Modena
a liveried servant leading
...


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