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12 article(s) translated from Estonian

At the Manor, or Jump into the Fire

She hoped the pianist would take the other cabanossi for himself. Who knows what Bulgarian horsemeat it was made of—what reason would she have had for trusting Statoil more than anyone else? Actually, she liked horsemeat, and although this cabanossi might not have been horse, and definitely wasn’t quality horse, she was now bolting it down as if she were starving. But the other cabanossi was for the pianist after all. The pianist had to take it himself, in his supple, smart...

[I wish there was a god]

I wish there was a god who would see to it                that we who work in Finland as bus drivers small-town hairdressers overwrought nurses rock band roadies liquor store assistants dressmakers and decorators would never know the persistence of power freaks            the attention of moneylenders the support of legal experts that we would be spared the taunts of...

A Dog’s Life

The dog ran round the corner, his fur shaggy and matted, and stayed there, sheltering from the wind and panting heavily. From a distance it looked as if he was leaning his shoulder against the building, which made him look even more human. He was old and filthy and probably hadn’t eaten for some time, since when I got close he looked straight at me with his light-brown, gummy eyes and started wagging his tail. His whole body wriggled along with that one body part that expresses a...

Evening Fare

This is a smart time, I think as I sit and eat a sandwich in the kitchen. Tomorrow is sorted, the hayracks ready, the tools even stowed in the shed, your magnificent culinary creation needs one more hour, (no, bread and ham won’t ruin my appetite, I don’t want to pig myself later). Actually, I could even go for a swim, do a length of the lake, come back tuckered and hungry, hang the towel out to dry, but that wouldn’t be fair on you. What’s that you’ve got...

Four Prose Poems

Förby    We have no dipping moon over a metropolis’s hills. We have no breeze caressing the parchment of an aging poetess that would cause her to say: “It comes from the desert! It comes from the desert!” We have wind against the wall of a wooden house like a throbbing ovation. We have a view from the window onto ruins that will be concealed in a few years by forgotten rowan trees. There is the transition of land into sea, there is the unsettled...

what do you write about

what do you write about? asked the Jordanian poet. about love, I answered. there isn’t anything else, is there. yes, agreed the Jordanian poet, there really isn’t anything else. when he read out his poem in the Arabic language his tears flowed freely. sentimental, I thought. then the same poem was read out in English, it spoke of how his family was killed before his eyes, his brothers, parents, wife, and of how apart from love there isn’t anything else. © Trinn...

Death among the Icebergs

Conchita Suárez had come to Tartu from Chile to study Estonian language and history. Her arrival here was not entirely a matter of chance. In point of fact, her grandfather had been forced to flee Estonia for Germany with his parents while still a small boy in 1944, and from there to South America, which meant that Conchita’s blood was one quarter Estonian. She had been in Estonia for over two years now. Having mastered the local language surprisingly quickly (testament to her...

Mice in the Wind

Victor didn’t throw out the empty bottle, but did the proper thing and left it beside the banister, so that the housekeeper or the first early riser rushing out to work would get it. Afterward he was overcome by a sense of peace that lasted a while, like a person who has come to a realization, who is no longer a mystery to himself. Carefree, he strolled homeward. So what then? Every experience is an experience! A man of letters has to be in contact with life, he reasoned to himself...

“Idleness Is Often Empowering . . . ”

Idleness is often empowering, recreating oneself— just as the moon gradually grows full once again, a battery surely and steadily recharges, so everything, everyone must have time for the self— for mirth and laziness time to be human. Translation of "Jõedeaeg on tihti jõuaeg." Copyright Doris Kareva. By arrangement with the author. Translation copyright 2007 by Tiina Aleman. All rights reserved.

“The sparks from your firesmoky eyes”

The sparks from your firesmoky eyes kept the room warm for hours, days, weeks, and months. I recognized that feeling: the glow. I recognized that feeling. Although it happened in another time, another film. When you photographed the paradise trees and I talked with the birds. Neither of us tasted anything there, did we? Translation of "Need sädemed Su tulesuitsusilmis." Copyright Doris Kareva. Translation copyright 2007 by Tiina Aleman. All rights...

“The reader casts his shadow over the poem”

The reader casts his shadow over the poem. What did you actually say: The vase is here or The sky is blue? All possibilities bloom in language, the mind hears but what it wants to or what it fears. The deaf man laments. The vase is here and The sky is blue in some ways are one and the same. In some ways and in some people a riddle is fathomable, the answer a sparkle. The sparkle solves it. Nearness defines it. Translation of "Luuletusele langeb lugeja...

“I don’t carry your picture in my purse”

I don't carry your picture in my purse; it burns anyway under my eyelids. Every expression, gesture, intonation, without my even wanting it, is etched— most clearly, your back, when you left that inexplicable May, that cruel winter, just as I directed— into the dark, to the left. Translation of "Ei kanna Su pilti käekotis." Copyright Doris Kareva. Translation copyright 2007 by Tiina Aleman. All rights reserved. Read Doris Kareva's "The...
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