TOMAS MIKAEL BÄCK
KJELL WESTÖ (ANDERS HED)
MERJA VIROLAINEN (b. 1962) has published four collections of poems, Hellyyttäsi taitat gardenian (Because of Your Tenderness You Break a Gardenia, 1990), Tervapeili (Tar Mirror, 1995), Pilvet peittävät sisäänsä pilvet (Clouds Encompass Clouds, 2000) and Olen tyttö, ihanaa! (I'm a Girl, Wonderful!, 2004). She has also written a book about shamanism and witchcraft and a play called Täyttymyskomedia (Fulfilment Comedy, 1993). Virolainen has also worked as translator, translating Keats, Shelley, Dickinson and Indian modern poetry among others.
|THE ROUGH FRICTION OF OPPOSITES
After staring into the magic fountain
of the hot dog stand for a long, long time
Kimmo strips off his jacket,
sits down on the bench and knocks back
the last drops from his bottle of vodka.
And behold, the stone bear leaps off his pedestal,
a fox and her cubs slink out of the trash can.
Ferns spring up on all sides,
blueberries sprout in pavement cracks.
The night street car plows its way to the stop
through a mist of hair grass,
its doors slam open,
badgers, hedgehogs, squirrels
jump out onto the tussocks.
Forest folk swarm out of the library,
martens, bunnyrabbits, wood grouse
flap out of the churchyard’s shades.
The organ bursts into pomp,
stucco flakes, dust moths rise
into the night sky.
Kimmo’s head sinks down to his chest,
the bearded boy wakes up from his dream
and two wood nymphs in blue come to guide him
to the paddy-boat waiting in the street.
Bottles clink, glasses break
What´s the use of prolonging,...
You put out my heart, like a cig...
That pimply-faced Narcissus
Friend, against my will
This parting of ours, how many...
Quietly sighing like sand
I close my eyes and open again
Oh back, shimmery parchment
This time next year
No, he didn't grow yet
Afterwards everyone leaves
Say, my sagacity, goodbye
I am the last poem
There are no neon lights in Hels...
By speaking from close by
Nothing has been
When a curlew cries
Mother's scent is powder
Grandma, your tissue-paper face...
Autumnal night pauses as I pause