Athanase Vantchev de Thracy
I’m looking at your books
Scattered on my table.
Books I’ve read and reread again and again,
Books whose nectar,
Like the juice of a succulent fruit,
Never seems to run dry.
I feast on your poetry
Watered by a million springs,
Like the Pactolus carrying the liquid gold of words,
A torrent eroding life’s rough edges.
You are the melodist in love with our language
Which you sing
Like the lark at dawn.
I read your classical lines
Supple as ballerinas beneath their tight lacing,
Your haiku, unerring arrows of mots justes.
I see you pass from the ode to the tanka
From the sonnet to the epigram
And make your free verse dance,
You the tightrope walker of the Word.
You leap from the most intimate tenderness
To the grandest epic of men of faith
And of fighters against all injustice!
Ferryman of poetry,
You can take the soul and the breath of your peers
And make us feel and love
All the bards of elsewhere!
Translated from the French of Marc Galan by Norton Hodges