††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †††††††ARMANDO ROJAS GUARDIA







When I was looking for you
here, in this house
where simple things
build walls around habit
and appease me, help me sleep
on a tangible floor,
solidly sustained;
when I wanted you to arrive
daily like tea,
recognizable and aromatic
like the smoke from my pipe,
calm like lamp light,
vibrant like all the insects
attracted by that glow
that protects me from the night
and makes repose sweet
and introverts it;
when you were able to be Coltrane,
erudite sax that accompanies
a frugal dinner; or maybe Rilke
read when I get up from the table
(Rilke domesticated: some verses
to take advantage of the hours for rest
as suits a laborious man);
finally, when the lethargy
that precedes the habit of sleep
led me, attentive, towards the bed
to find you oneiric and somnambulant
suddenly the certainty, even corporeal,
arrived that you existed nowhere
not even in the everything
of this orderly life of peace,
in no sensitive place
and under no comforting light
(nor in the story of dreams).
Still and insomniac in the silence,
I knew you were in back: only the reverse
of each object, only the spine
of all the words of the poem
(unreachable spine, of course,
but that magnetizes the music of the verse),
barely the void of forms
where they are unleashed, already free
to be resolved in graceful nothingness
Ėa sweet, compact nothingnessĖ
around which revolve, unknowingly,
every language of man, every gesture,
the entire syntax of things,
sharp night, snow of language,
that deafens the roar of the pages
and blurs lines like this one
with which I speak the parliament
of an actor never accustomed
to the theaterís enormous muteness
when everyone has left and the curtain
is only stirred by the wind,
the frozen wind of the night,
the sidereal wind, that doesnít applaud,
or laugh, or cry, and dissipates
stage machinery, special effects and scenes,
in other words, this decorative fiction
(pipe and tea, lamps, insects,
Coltrane, Rilke, notebook dream)
abandoned at last: useless.



Trees are sacraments of peace.
They teach me the difficult art of patience,
firm in their vertical poise
facing wind and the uncountable whip of rain.
Its tranquility is traveled by silence
as leaves, like lips, only invite
you to watch another flower, inner and secret
which canít be described in words.
They speak to spirit, not the ear.
The patient gouge, ever unveiling itself ascendant
by an effect of the religious attraction of light
that elevates it, over the years,
skyward; it seems to weigh on its branches
give us an exact sensation
of standing in front of a luxuriant
sacred receptacle. A treeís calm illuminates.
Itís not by chance that, under your shadow, Buddha
had received the austere ray
of truth located beyond the traffic
of everything dripping identical pain:
the ultimate quietness, uncontaminated,
whose sign on earth is trees,
to follow the most serene threads
of Godís holy leisure watching
like perfect repose in his eyes.

The tree is always vespertine
even as a morning splendor illumines:
whose thin, self-structured architecture
only finds a precise target
at dusk, when peace,
already ripened, expands its cups
where birds rest, becoming quiet.



Unobstructed, the building
suspends itself in the still
timid light of dawn.
Mere iron and crystal
draw that weightless
geometry impelled to seek
the cloudís glory.

This century is mystical
despite all its cruelties:
it was able to build
an exact moment of innocence
to make it shine for a few minutes,
just before the traffic
that will swarm the city.
An instant later,
                       the aereal architecture
will regain its showcase form,
its vulgar eloquence, its urban pomp.

Meanwhile, the peace of the avenue
is desolate, where the steel,
shining pulchritude floats
giving back our soul.


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