Five Poems

Anna Gual

Joint Ceremony 

Demigods hide
in our eardrums
so we will not see them.

Only if we delve into the cosmos
can we feel
the tremor caused
by their fear of discovery.

Open the portal
to stellar truth and tell me
what you see.


Small things come in pairs.

Two eyes.
Two ears.
Two arms.
Two wrists.
Two elbows.
Two hands.
Two nipples.
Two legs.
Two ovaries.
Two testicles.
Two knees.
Two feet.

But death, death is so big
there can only be one.


I speak the word universe aloud
and know that when you hear it you’ll notice the fascination
which overflowed while I wrote
you’ll hear the enigmas of the word collapsing my brain.

You’ll sense the frenetic register
of a heart rate and a breath shortened
by a revelation of the emptiness that fills,
that embraces dead zones.

This is not science, this is pure mysticism
which cannot be documented
not with numbers
not with letters.

The stupidity of humans is enough to make you laugh
always asking ourselves questions.


I did not want a map.
I wanted a machete to take me
through the jungle, following the unconscious. 

When they say too late,
are you sure they’re not exaggerating? 

I found a little knife
and I think I could cut away the plants
that get into my eyes,
that obstruct my will,
that exalt contradictions. 

I did not want a map.
I wanted a God within everyone. 


Between letter and letter
grows an abundance of grass
that I do not plan to cut.

Once again I unbury meanings,
tautening words by joining them.

See how I contemplate, 
how my body stirs
only in the act of looking.

Stretching definitions
like someone stretching
their bones after waking. 

Lengthening sleep 
so the waves reach you 
now that you are every house, 
every pantry, 
every nuclear bunker.

Stop repeating in a murmur
that you don’t want me
on the side of the bed
if I write like that, I can hear you.

Things are not what they seem,
but rather everything else.

translated from the Catalan by Ona Bantjes-Ràfols