Beste hizkuntzetako lanen zerrenda


  Translation: Catherine Phil MacCarthy



Self-Mythology of La Jolie Fille


I love parentheses, controlled areas like smiling cheeks, arriving home a little bit late, the landscape's violet contrasts.


I love the random truthfulness, faint descriptions, the warranted risk, excitement that produces irritation and the need to pee.


As a child, I paid a small girl a gold bracelet in exchange for a swing. My mother sent me to look for the cheat, who denied our pact. I remember the bad deal only because of the incredible quarrel.


On another occasion —it was a time of spring tides: the cream-yellow of the waves had stained the beach like frothy pus, the same girl and her friends undressed me, to play families. I played everybody's doll. A wave wetted my bottom. I remember my state of neglect, because I remember the dirty water and the look of a retarded boy. I also remember the cold and shame.


For now I have recounted the sorry business, kept to myself the underwear, examined the murky water, I get up at odd times to put the past on my side, I pray never to lose the fingers necessary to tighten the screws.


How many girls are violated today in Burundi? How many died in Darfur this last minute? An Afghan child speaks to me from a photo: "I was only an instant in the great geometric mosaic, one passing tile, that relative. Afterwards, the mouths of towers devoured my shadow, and nothing was done. I heard the voice of my mother giving birth to my name as though a crack in the wall. Today is a tranquil day. My feet remain in the rubbish-tip. My life is more barbed wire."


Here remains a cold and shame of a different order. May the destitute be left in peace. No, I am not worthy to carry you in my voice.


Au revoir, La Jolie Fille, à jamais, la petite, tout est déjà bien vu au temps des adieux. Ça va bien ce soir, This is nothing. I burnt the mattress, and the bills, pictures, pills and postcards. Ça va bien ce soir, this is nothing, c'est la vie en rose, horseshoe luck, c'est la vie en rose, just another amphibious war.




© Miren Agur Meabe
© translation: Catherine Phil MacCarthy