Let us look at the window and see
the sky petrified in fog.
The light muffled gray
or the hidden flight of the birds
with white and mottled feathers
when we didn’t know that species existed.
Don’t you think about love?
It truly doesn’t happen to you?
It truly doesn’t happen to you frequently
like when you go to a museum
and a painting
made by an artist who died long ago
awaits you
in the empty room?
Pay close attention: it’s that sky,
the same one you see through the window
an April day when it seems
to rain but doesn’t.
It’s that tree, the same one
that you see how it grows,
drawn in detail, even from far away.
It truly doesn’t happen to you
that you believe you’ve lived it before?
Knowing that you dreamt it one day.
Recognizing that someone is speaking for you
when you want to say something
that goes beyond a half truth.
Pay close attention, yes, and don’t turn your head
that is sustained in the window
with the support of some hands
that are seen from outside.
Rest your arms on the earth.
Open your eyes, expect to see nothing
at first. Feel the wind
on your face and let yourself be carried away
by the eternal silence of life
which will await you, like one who awaits
sitting on his heels,
the first and true silence.
It truly doesn’t happen to you?
Don’t you think that this is how it is
to almost always be alone
like others who spend their lives in love?
You open a window and see nothing.
The fog doesn’t let you see a few meters,
white light and white smoke
that emerges from a non-existent fireplace.
But you know you won’t hold back in spite of everything.
That you will dare to look further
in case something opens amidst the nothingness.
That you will again breathe the frozen cold.
That you will again think I’ve seen it before.
I’ve already lived it at some time
when we still didn’t know
what it was that was happening to us.

© Translated by Sandra Kingery.
Taken from the book Escribir la distancia (2012)