[in english] A Film from the Sixties

Autorem wiersza jest Wisława Szymborska

This adult male. This person on earth.
Ten billion nerve cells. Ten pints of blood
pumped by ten ounces of heart.
This object took three billion years to emerge.

He first took the shape of a small boy.
The boy would lean his head on his aunt`s knees.
Where is that boy. Where are those knees.
The little boy got big. Those were the days.
These mirrors are cruel and smooth as asphalt.
Yesterday he ran over a cat. Yes, not a bad idea.
The cat was saved from this age`s hell.
A girl in a car checked him out.
No, her knees weren`t what he`s looking for.
Anyway he just wants to lie in the sand and breathe.
He has nothing in common with the world.
He feels like a handle broken off a jug,
but the jug doesn`t know it`s broken and keeps going to the well.
It`s amazing. Someone`s still willing to work.
The house gets built. The doorknob has been carved.
The tree is grafted. The circus will go on.
The whole won`t go to pieces, although it`s made of them.
Thick and heavy as glue sunt lacrimae rerum.
But all that`s only background, incidental.
Within him, there`s awful darkness, in the darkness a small boy.

God of humor, do something about him, okay?
God of humor, do something about him today.

(trans. by Stanislaw Baranczak and Clare Cavanagh)

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