Translated by Richard Coombes

Once again we’re not given the chance to sleep through

Once again we’re not given the chance to sleep through…
Sweetheart, there’s no need to cry.
It’s just a sort of a game, where you
Send a ball tumbling down from the sky.

And again it fell short, and once more not on us—
The thing is, you see, we’re endowed
With luck. That’s not smoke and it’s certainly not gas
Just the sky in a blanket of cloud.

Let’s make our own game. Let’s play hide and seek—
Oh look, someone’s dug us a hole.
I’ll pull the door shut as we go, and we’ll sneak
Across. And you pray to prevail …

My country

My country has become a total stranger,
Clamped, clenched, caught in a bloody snare
In the tract between the flood and raging fire,
In the crack between madness and despair.

And life meanwhile is passing by once more
Like sunlight seen beyond a prison wall.
The dead may well be ignorant of shame;
The rest are trapped beneath its filthy pall.

Why fight? It’s simpler to be killed en masse
While hoping to be lucky and survive.
Here even the most dutiful of lackeys
Will go the way of everyone alive.

For one and all one single bloody whirlpool,
One poison, heady and unhinged: war.
My country’s stopped remembering names, not grasping
It has no friends, no family any more.

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