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Melcion Mateu i Adrover - Eight Short Poems

Melcion Mateu i Adrover was born in Barcelona in 1971, the son of Majorcan parents. He earned his B.A. in Spanish Literature from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona and his MA in Comparative Literature from Cornell University. He currently works as a translator and literature instructor. His first book of poems, Vida evident, was awarded  the "Octavio Paz Poetry Award " in 1998 and will soon be published  by Columna (Col·lecció Àuria).

In the original Catalan | Spanish translation

For Jaume Mateu


You, driver, heading down Route Thirteen
It's so easy to pass it by
Maybe it's on a map you haven't seen
Never mentioned on the airwaves.



It's thaw-time; the machines'll come
to clear the ice and filthy snow
The sun'll give a timid glance
not enough to make the earth grow.


He expected to discover Spring
and Winter caught him offguard. On the iced
branches of the maple, it’s easy
to wait, a red speck among whitish stains.
.Squirrel Rights League


Fast-forwarded and all alone.
The park's lawn is so long and slight
that he doubts, when reaching the brook
if the park was green, or white.


The Botanical Gardens have
Countless flowers and evergreens
Beyond this room and stuffy smell
Real flowers wait. Go out: it's time.


Dog-eared books, cutlery, the odd mirror
the odd gramophone, a perished wineskin
and pieces of wood, plastic and metal
get rid of it all, ditch it, spring-cleaning.


The piano-man's here already
his pipe lit and his hair in a tail
at the keyboard, his hands steady
he breathes in smoke then, mad, whips the keys.







Some things don't fit in a poem
beyond the edges, things that are so real
they can't be used, not even as
metaphors for a life that is false.

© 1998 Melcion Mateu i Adrover

Translated from the Catalan by Matthew Tree
Telèfon/fax: Barcelona  93 443 26 30
Email: matthewtree@mx4.redestb.es

These poems may not be archived or distributed further without the author's express permission. Please see our conditions of use.

squirrel pic (Photoshopped by the BR) from  the Squirrel Rights League

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