Cold Weather Fever
Ashes canebrakes oh your days
By eternity are foresaken
And like fancy dress our lies
Are tears mirrored into life
Shallow mirror and high tower
Death-water no ocean can confine
Beyond the digging hoe the plow
The fever and the furrowed clay
Weep that my space may bind
Space more complete upon you
Than any ocean makes an exile
My fevers furrow canebrake dead
And ash again for all such lies
More than eternity are clay.
On the wool of sound some object of silence one so immense.
The issue is love, its turning towards solicitous shop windows.
Who stops who gazes? Here thought arranges the display of rags, and charm lingers on and on.
There, giant cats scratch the earth, the steel of silence and faith with no object.
Copyright © Édouard Glissant, from Black Salt, Betsy Wing, translator, Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 1998. Copyright © Translation by Betsy Wing. All rights reserved.