In the obituary notices in Liberation
I find that F. died.
She was the most beautiful girl at the Sarajevo
Philosophy Faculty, class of 1974.
My roommate in the student dormitory
Drank day and night because of her,
although she once told me
“I am fonder of you.”
There was no love between us.
I fondled her once
on a shaded bench on Wilson’s Promenade
She asked me: “Would you write a poem for me?”
“If I were talented,” I replied,
“I would willingly dedicate a sonnet for your legs
Because superior proportion requires
She burst into joyful laughter.
I didn’t see her for more than thirty years
I heard that she had some
Unsuccessful marriages. Poor child
Germinated and left in times of suffering and pain.
Last night I reflected on the form of rhyme
But all I succeeded to mutter
are these incoherent sentences
That rhyme with earth
That rhyme with grass.
Translated by Amy Gopp