Saudade & L’enigme du desir


Paul Amlehn

Originally published in The Evergreen Review Issue 117 in February, 2009.


This night wounds time. With dread and longing sorrow I make my way in search of you. Starved of direction or vector this changeless dream. The enemy within the enemy without. This sickness governs every one of my acts. Along the path back to the cold of nothingness I hear the light beat on the other side. All is visible and all elusive, all is near and can't be touched. How much longer must I carry this body of grief? The useless anguish of my flesh and my weeping without tears. Amnesia guides me through these solitary fields over the numb earth. There is something I am here for something I have to do before I can go the dead around like birdcalls rain in my face. I have created a loneliness for myself that no one can imagine. I am filled with all things seen for the last time.

L'enigme du desir

Already I sense my own destruction
Through this love that is beginning to invade me.
My soul. Into your body.
Your skin. Is sky.
Image of the adored image of my betrayer.
Long sorrow.
The bright and bleeding air.

Systole. Diastole.
A cataract of falling hair.
Your navel is the birthplace of the world.
Desirous of you a glyph of revulsion.
Coming together and letting go.
Annihilating adoration.
Our long kiss severed.

Dream and trauma.
Desolating absence.
I still wander these empty wastes inhabited by all that you are.
Capture of the breath capture of the voice.
L'engime du desir.
Though all my being calls out to you
I know you will not return.