Dubitation (a selection)

larger

Martín Gambarotta
Translated by Alexis Almeida

 

Here, the water is different, the artichoke

leaves are different, everything is

in essence, different,

but he who takes the bottle from the refrigerator

and puts it on the table is

basically the same

 

*

 

You who choose

confrontation, you who choose

confrontation, you

who choose confrontation.

 

You who choose reverberation, you

who choose reverberation, you who

choose reverberation.

 

You who choose dubitation, you

who choose dubitation, you who choose

dubitation.

 

You who choose anomaly, you

who choose anomaly, you who choose

anomaly.

 

You who measure your actions

milimetrically, you who measure

your actions milimetrically, you

who measure you actions milimetrically.

 

*

Fifteen months, three of those months

to decode the rest of the months

your months, which is to say north of those

months there was nothing.

 

 

*

 

You who are able to materialize, you

who are able to materialize. You who are able

to materialize.

 

 

*

You who don’t understand the benefit

of having spent long hours, entire days

with binoculars watching birds and

recording their names in a notebook.

 

 

 

*

To know the species

of the bird well

before naming it

 

is the only honest

way to name

it

 

so when he saw

what seemed to be

four wild

 

parrots in a low

flight between the thin

palms in the plaza

 

in unison: four green

fighter-bombers

in miniature

 

zig-zagging

as if to write Tel Aviv

together in the air

 

I couldn’t

digest well

the experience

 

*

 

The fugitive chess player in an amusement park.

 

The trichotomy that distorts sight.

 

*

 

 

It’s not the moment for putting the artichoke

on an immaculate metal table

and it’s not the moment for digressions

about why he didn’t put the artichoke

on the table; it’s not the retractable moment

the regressing moment for everything, the moment

to assign a color to every month

the moment of the flaming black rag

over his head.

 

 

*

 

If you want

your house to be

Babylon

 

without a visa

you can’t

sing

 

if you don’t want

to sit in a

plastic chair

 

if you sing

they won’t give you a

visa.

 

*

He’s not here

he went to buy

unleavened bread

 

he’s not here

he went to bathe

in the river

 

he’s not here

he went to rotate

in the void

 

he’s not here

he went from the cold

into the cold

 

Image: Delfina Estrada, “Battlefield”

gambaMartín Gambarotta (Buenos Aires, 1968). His book Punctum was awarded the First Prize at the I Concurso Hispanoamericano Diario de Poesía. Punctum was published by Tierra Firme, Buenos Aires, 1996 and reedited by Mansalva and Ediciones VOX in 2011. His books include Seudo (2000), Relapso+Angola (2005), Para un plan primavera (2011) and the reedition of Seudo / Dubitación (2013), all of them by Ediciones VOX. In 2015, the house n direcciones published the prose piece La abolición de los teclados.
AlexisAlmeidaAlexis Almeida grew up in Chicago. Her poems and translations have appeared or are forthcoming in Gulf Coast, Quarterly West, Prelude, Pinwheel, The Brooklyn Rail, and elsewhere. Her chapbook of poems, Half-Shine, is recently out from Dancing Girl Press, and her translation of Florencia Castellano's Propiedades vigiladas [Monitored Properties] is recently out from Ugly Duckling Presse. Her translation of Roberta Iannamico's Tendal [Wreckage] is forthcoming from Toad Press. She is a contributing editor at The Elephants. She is the recipient of a Yaddo residency, and recently spent the year in Buenos Aires on a Fulbright research grant, compiling and co-translating an anthology of contemporary female poets living in Argentina. She currently lives in Providence, Rhode Island.


Published on April 7th of 2017 in Poetry.



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