William Michaelian

Poems, Notes, and Drawings

Friends

This poem, too, was written about twenty years ago. If I still have the original typescript, it’s in a crate in one of our closets. Sometime after it appeared on my first website, I’m Telling You All I Know, it was noticed by a writer in France, who took it upon herself to translate the poem into French. “Friends” also appeared in a little magazine called The Synergyst.

 
Friends

On the sidewalk
the old woman sits
at a small table
talking to her dog.
She sips coffee,
offers him crumbs
from her paper plate.
Croissant, she says,
and the dog answers
with a sneezy little bark
that sounds exactly
like the word flaky.
They smile at each other,
then pause for a moment
to scratch at their fleas.
The morning sun rises
above the brick building
across the street.
It is a good sun,
full of understanding
and ancient wisdom.

 

 
Amis

Sur le trottoir,
La vieille femme est assise
Devant une petite table.
Elle parle à son chien ;
Elle boit un café,
Elle lui donne des miettes
De son assiette en carton
« Croissant » dit-elle
Et le chien répond
Par un petit aboiement
Un éternuement
Qui ressemble exactement
Au mot « flocon ».
Ils se sourient,
Puis s’arrêtent un instant
Pour gratter leurs puces.
Le soleil se lève
Au-dessus du bâtiment de brique
En face dans la rue.
C’est un bon soleil
Plein de compréhension
Et d’ancienne sagesse.

traduit de l’anglais par Louise Kiffer

Categories: Collected Poems

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