November 22, 2015

The Baltics by Tomas Tranströmer

The poem "The Baltics" by Tomas Tranströmer has been translated by Patty Crane from Swedish into English.  This is just a small excerpt of the three part long poem:


Wind enters the pine forest. It sighs heavily and lightly.
Likewise the Baltic sighs in the island’s interior; deep in the forest you’re out on the open sea.
A new breath of wind and the place is desolate and still again.
A new breath of wind, murmuring about other shores.
It has to do with the war.
It has to do with places where citizens are under control,
where thoughts are built with emergency exits,
where a conversation between friends is really a test of what friendship means.
And when you’re together with those you don’t know so well. Control. A certain candor is all right just don’t take your eyes off whatever’s wandering the edges of the conversation: something dark, a dark stain.
Something that can drift in
and destroy everything. Don’t take your eyes off it!

 Read the poem in its entirety at

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