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In the name of God we abandoned signs in the air.
What was left to us was to live, to live without bonds,
in the name of no one. We don’t bet on him
(we, who never bet), but we were young,
or the words still had light, words
of a few strange verses
that the heart encoded.
The afternoon was a child we embraced,
laughing in the false morning, and the alcohol
and its exciting silver, which later wearies and scratches,
made us walk without direction, without hurry.
It was sweet not to have a beginning, let alone a destiny.
It was sweet to be in the open air, to cross time,
to be life that doesn’t know or is only born
creating bodies that sleep like good oranges
behind the eyes.
But the night arrived, the last one, terrible and without warning,
to mow down our glances and to leave of love only asphalt.
The cities were and insomnia and any soul became small
in their reservoirs. Goodbye and blood,
continuous goodbye the gestures, verbs and days.
We had nothing: neither awkward cornices, nor expired words,
only city and isomnia, a preliminary sketch without colors
in order to cut ourselves off from him and not have a father.
Therefore we bit through the sketch and looked at the air.
What we looked for dead birds know:
a smell of morning over affable laughter.
Perhaps we didn’t have to, we who were the lost.
But we did it, and we tried to get a rainfall to return
over the tattered farms, and to live no more,
to live without having to do it in the name of anyone.
(I speak in plural to pretend not to be so alone,
or perhaps in this night I am everyone.)


Santiago Montobbio
Translation by Alexandra van de Kamp and William Glenn

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