The Birth of the Poet
The warm calf’s belly is on his
forehead. Flies buzz and crawl
into his mouth. He closes
the powerplant. He intercepts
the raft with the oar. He hits
the cherries, prepares the sling. An ox
falls like a bronze, father doesn’t. Rice is
stuck on his neck, behind his forehead.
There are rings in the cement. Their soft
wood drowns into his flame. Muscle
destroys his face. It’s scribbled. It tortures
itself and stares. His entrails are spread
as if he knew where the birds would go.
The warm calf’s belly is ripe for command.
Translated from the Slovenian by the author and Michael Thomas Taren