Retreat to places that smell of soap Go to wet balconies Wrap your hands in cool, damp gauze Scrub your flesh stark white Purify your tongue and all you've seen Gather your illuminated words onto snow white paper Retreat from the war zone, you can't manage, The deaths in this zone are contagious Full of crumpling and scuffling maggots, I say flesh has gone wormy- What difference does it make If it's yours or someone else's! * In midafternoon, wander around rooms, plunge into the sun's dust Look at people passing by a cat Listen to voices Lend an ear to the universe and beyond The voice is in the spine's hissing, humming flute, blow! Collect it, collect it within yourself Let the crowds be distracted By the war zone's daily news Record their voices, This way, one day, someone Will understand that they, just like you, are existed, That if one is to stop at the edge of hell This is the only way to stop * They'll understand That one mustn't come too close to any hell Whether it be inside, or outside with the crowds For, what wholly burns will never burn again It won't flame up, no light will leave it A person must always burn as if he'll burn again The place to stop is neither inside nor outside hell, But in the place where Inside and Outside resound simultaneously: At the edge between Inside and Outside. No voice resounds Inside The voice that resounds Outside is inaudible * None of the voices in this zone Will outlast time. All things fall into the time in which they materialize And, just as a sand dune swallows a skeleton, Voices will be swallowed by their own time All that will remain of you, of your going, of your coming, of your retreat upon failing, of your indecision, of your diving into daydreams, of your being cursed and torn apart, of your returning to reconsolidate, is a withered story and a wisp of hair. Think about it, Your hair will outlive your voice. When the ink on these pages has decayed, This crow Will fly once again from that sea's withered bed * Now, fling your hand into the air- In the invisible cleft that opens When the ripples from your hand dwindle and disappear What will remain of you-maybe-is a plump bug. * If your abridged story is told, a breath will leave a mouth. That story's breath, too, dwindling, disappearing, will reach the next planet. Even if this planet doesn't, the next will inhale what's left of your breath. One mid-afternoon, one child having cookies and tea will misread-who knows, maybe-one of your sentences. Your name will be remembered for that wrong sentence. Who knows, maybe that sentence will be more beautiful than yours. A redheaded boy you can't picture now will understand you. * Meanwhile, that crow Will leave this sea's withered bed And, with this present hair of yours attached to her foot, Fly toward another planet Without expecting to reach it, but striving nonetheless Don't forget, what wholly burns will never burn again! A person must always burn as if they'll blaze again Now stop, that's enough Stop at this edge Who knows, maybe one day you'll embark once more On a journey you can't yet know
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