To Jump On The Shore of Death


Olaf Bull (1883 – 1933)


by Olaf Bull

Med ringbjerges øde graanen
ligger et land under lav —
en bleket brokke av maanen
slængt hen i et jordisk hav.

Paa øen steiler en kilde
over det døde land;
dens straaler er store og vilde,
en styrtende lilje av vand!

Men lyt, i de klare dage
naar solen gløder dens skum,
dæmrer en dæmpet klage
gjennem det rene rum.

«Jeg spruter fra hede skaaler,
«jeg dønner fra jordens bryst,
«jeg dømtes med store straaler
«at springe paa dødens kyst,

«hvor ikke paa hundrede mile
«en eneste blomst i knop
«trænger den hede ile,
«som vælder av svælget op!»

Det rinder i maanegløden,
det straalende, sære tegn
paa livets maalløse øde
i lavaens drømme-egn.

Bitter til sidste time
kilden ødsler sit blod,
— der vilde ha dræbt hver kime,
som ramtes av dets flod!

With the desolate grain of the ring mountains
is a low country under
a pale rupture of the moon
thrown into an earthly sea.

On the island, a spring steals
over the frozen land;
its rays are large and wild,
a rushing lily of water!

But listen, on a clear day,
when the sun glows its foam,
makes a muffled complaint
through the pure spirits.

“I sprout from hot bowls,
“I dance from the breast of the earth,
‘I am germinated with big rays
“To jump on the shore of death,

‘Where not in a hundred miles
«A single flower is in bud
“The hot rush needs,
“That swells the throat!”

It flows in the moonlight,
the radiant, strange sign
in the utter desolation of life
in the dream-lava area.

Bitter to the last hour
the source spills its blood,
– that would have killed every germ,
struck by its river!



Come With Me

by Robert Bly

Come with me into those things that have felt this despair for so long—
Those removed Chevrolet wheels that howl with a terrible loneliness
Lying on their backs in the cindery dirt, like men drunk, and naked,
Staggering off down a hill at night to drown at last in the pond.
Those shredded inner tubes abandoned on the shoulders of thru-ways,
Black and collapsed bodies, that tried and burst,
And were left behind;
And the curly steel shavings, scattered about on garage benches,
Sometimes still warm, gritty when we hold them,
Who have given up, and blame everything on the government,
And those roads in South Dakota that feel around in the darkness . . .

Published by

A Sonnet Obsession

I am a life-long Minnesotan who resides in Minneapolis. I hope you enjoy my curated selection of sonnets, short poems and nerdy ruminations. I am pleased to offer Fourteenlines as an ad and cookie free poetry resource, to allow the poetry to be presented on its own without distractions. Fourteenlines is a testament to the power of the written word, for anyone wanting a little more poetry in their life.

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