September 19, 2008

Kehidupan Kedua

Tentang Nalar dan Horizonnya

Few of them made it into thirty.

Old age was the previlege of rocks and trees.

One had to hurry, to get on with life

before the sun went down

before the first snow

Thirteen-year-olds bearing children,

four-year-olds stalking birds’ nests in the rushes,

leading the hunt at twenty—

they aren’t yet, then they are gone.

Infinity’s ends fused quickly.

Witches chewed charms

with all the teeth of youth intact.

A son grew to manhood beneath his father’s eye.

Beneath the grandfather’s blank sockets the grandson was born.

Life, however long, will always be short.

Too short for anything to be added.

— Wislawa Szymborska

Our Ancestor’s Short Lives

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