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        XXI

Because tobacco writes loneliness,
verses of opaque love, while it delays
that exact moment of sitting down,
of seeing the glasses dead on the table,
the room in a dream,
              and the injured restlessness
of the door closing
for the last time, on this night.

Through words those that grow distant take leave.
I loved loneliness, but it is a lie
that I grew with her. I do not remember
the broken wire fences of the moon
if it is not through other eyes, nor do I know
a greater illusion than the sea caught in other hands.
But here too, here confusedly,
watched by books with insomnia, by records
not entirely chosen,
you were wont to hide in the gloom,
inhabit the bodegas of silence,
seeking a reason to rise later
under cover, with the moon.

And so one is grateful for the city,
to have her here, sleeping,
wrapped in her sheets of light,
fearsome and ruthless like a pirate ship
in which one cannot trust
but that always, always harbors us.
Because of those nights, that day
we both knew something,
beyond memories or pleasures.
And not love, not its wordiness,
not will,
that moral that stuns as we love.

Someone I barely know,
tired of waiting, surely
asleep with impatience,
when he breathes he lashes me, from another room
over my bed.
Someone who waits still
to hold himself down for an instant, to caress a body

without questions.

The sun is weak, the reason does not matter
and I will draw near to the sheets slowly.
Avoiding the I love you,
in the confusing lucidity of the dawn
we will leave the night behind,
just as a ship leaves at its back,
like an immense footprint, the sea entire.
And as we kiss,
I will remember without a doubt
other sunrises in the water,
looking at my reflection face-to-face,
with the same fear of going under.

Rarely do two joined solitudes
resist words.

autógrafo

Luis García Montero
Translation by Alice McAdams


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Book II
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