Friday, October 3, 2008

C'est seulement avec toi

Թարգմանեց՝ Լուիզա Սարեանը

Les jours sont froids, sombres et moroses,
Les vents sont violents et la vie émiettée,
Toi tu n'es pas d'ici, moi un autre de la rive,
C'est seulement avec toi que je ne suis pas triste.

Nous ne sommes ni proches, ni au repos,
Ni séparés l'un de l'autre, ni étrangers,
Dis voir où va nous sourire la chance,
Peut-être en rêve, dans cette brûlante nostalgie.

C'est toujours le même café enfumé,
Mais cette fois-ci tu es au loin;
Tu te trouves dans un endroit tel
Que les océans remplissent les siècles…

De ce côté…obscur, bloc de glace,
Regarde un peu comme je tremble, dans l'insignifiance;
Je t'ai ouvert tout mon lyrisme,
C'est un livre de poésie, vide de page en page.

La soirée est vaine, vide dans l'obscurité,
C'est un vent perdu, qui broie les feuilles,
Comme l'églantier au parvis du monastère,
C'est seulement avec toi que je ne suis pas triste.


Amour inconnu

A T.

Je ne sais pas qui j'ai attendu toute ma vie
Je ne sais pas ce que j'aimais ou n'aimais pas
Parfois j'entrevoyais une faible lueur dans un regard
Et les ombres d'un rêve sur d'autres lèvres.

Je voyais un doux reflet dans les cheveux de l'une
J'admirais pourtant les longues jambes de l'autre
Une autre me charmait par sa démarche délicate
Et une autre quand elle souriait en silence.

J'en ai désirée une pour son simple souffle et son odeur
Comme j'ai convoité le cou de marbre et le dos d'une autre
Une autre quand elle avait bu et avait le fou rire
Une autre pour ses larmes de cristal et virginales.

Je ne sais pas qui j'ai attendu toutes ces années
Je ne sais pas ce que j'aimais ou n'aimais pas
C'était peut-être une qui m'aimait en secret,
Et pleurait du fond du cœur toute la nuit.

Traduction Louise KifferD'après la version anglaise de Tatul Sonentz


The city was breathing
crimson, white, cerulean…
Smooth sidewalks,
In wondrously serene,
clean, measured gasps.
They helped
Synchronize the pulse
of the city’s towers,
Before the hustle, while the pristine
Countenance of dawn still retained
The invisible dew of plants,
and meadows
before sunrise.
Or the last vanished scraps
of overnight hilarityscreamcries…
Serenity --
“Sainte Marguerite”,
our quiet street,
Which stalked with proficiency
The re-ascension of pyramids
From Egypt to the great, world-renown
museum near-by,
The monumental emergence of the temple
in the eternal city,
The prancing of the ram, and the lion
from Mesopotamia,
The awakening of the goddess Anahit
from Uratu, and
Stones, stones, stones,
eons, eons, eons…

* * *

The city was breathing-murmuring
As if seven hours before
A night of fireworks had never flared,
And the hotel-fortress
at the stark corner
of the square
Had not soared high into the sky
like a mystifying,
fearsome phantom,
With Count Dracula’s black cape
on its nape.
As if
There never were
Blazing rings
of frozen
hand, eye,
ardor, chase.
As if no crowd ever gathered
At Chinatown, and
Tom Jones
Had never freely excavated
the strata
of the tattered curtain of years –
Never was there a deluge of lights
and deflowered ones…
Now, the “Sainte Marguerite” avenue
Seemed so blameless,
One would guess
You could not
In one or two leaps
Reach the jaws of the huge
Chinese dragon,
The belly of the underground transit
incredibly awesome,
Which, instead of taking you
to the Armenian Church,
Delivers you to an area
of drugs,
and a near-by
organic food store,
Farm, village, village village,
Clear soup,
Pepper, mustard
And yellow, blue, green
oil, oil, oil…
As I look for eye-glasses
For my future;
The black dude says,
“Upon return”,
And, upon return,
It turns out
My petty mistake is forgiven.
And all is well,
All things
Have reached their destination.
Prescription… prescription…
The yellow city was breathing
Instead of the Armenian Church,
we reached Organic Village,
blue, yellow, green oil,
and a decrepit old man,
who has unbuttoned the blouse
of his homely spouse --
such an abundant breast,
as if newly varnished,
and polished.
Everything has gone back to its place,
Except for me --
Having left my tiny domicile,
I desire to return
To my abode,
Having already bought
For future use.
Eons, eons, eons,
stones, stones, stones,
my love,
my love,
my love…


the city was breathing
crimson, white
Had I known,
That after losing you
for so many years
You are living here.
I would not have waited
At the waking day’s gasp,
Inter-night laughterscreamssobs’
ripped shreds,
Bypassing the reappearance of the great
international museum’s
pyramids from the desert,
The re-erection of the temple
from the eternal city,
the rising of the ram, the lion
from Mesopotamia,
the arousal of the goddess Anahit
from Urartu
And disdaining eons, eons, eons,
Kicking stones, stones, stones,
I would have found you, my love…
And the city,
the pyramid,
Gushed red,
cobalt torches,
Far from being fireworks,
It was more a holocaust,
And Count Dracula,
Taking advantage of the general
Flung himself down
From the hideous roof
Of the fortress-inn
at a corner of the square,
Reaching the plaza
he broke,
he hacked
the fiery rings
of hand, eye,
fervor, flight,
Chinatown was sacked,
The gurgling monotone and black
Spitfire shift-shields of motorbikes,
To stand, In glorious warfare,
Against the javelins
Of an erupting volcano.
The Count looked for virgins,
To drink their warm blood
Under his black cape
And the blue mist of young skin.
Resonated with sirens,
And dispatched protests
To the all-powerful and incredibly awesome
And the volcano and the monster
engaged in an inhuman
mortal battle.
The cannibal wolf-man Count
Roamed everywhere,
Entering drugstores,
Drinking potions against
Cross, silver, chrism and metal.
Invisible in mirrored glass,
Yet he applied to his hair brilliantine
oil, oil…
Then, treating the metropolis
As a mountain town,
He located roof,
Tower dungeon
And facing the moon
Concealed behind
Clouds of thick
Volcano smoke,
Ashes and soot,
Ooo… ooo… ooo…
And you and I, my love,
in this nightmare,
In this frightful, apocalyptic
At last found and entered
The small yet warm and cozy
Armenian Church
To be saved
under the silver cross
of the priest in a black cassock,
drinking wine the color of blood.

* * *

…Outside they congratulated us,
The decrepit husband,
His varnished wife
And the virgins
Swooning to the robust singing of Tom Jones.
The awesome flood subsided,
The liquid fire of the lava froze
turning to icy snow,
The drops of blood dripping
From the fangs of the Count flowered
into myriads
of tiny, glitzy, glittering
violets on the floor,
A white waft drifted along,
A cool, shivering zephyr
Echoed a carol
Orbiting around
blue, yellow, green sea…

* * *

From the desert pyramids to the temple
of the eternal city,
From the altar of Mesopotamia
To the Urartian mask of Anahit,
stones, stones, stones,
eons, eons, eons
scripts, scripts,scripts…
And this is also script
Halved by the sword of fate,
These are lines
Turned to cinders in the fire of time,
Immolated in the flames of the furnace
of sighs,
In the wounds of regrets,
They are brittle, fragile,
They are throbbing, docile,
In short, they are stems of snow-flowers,
They are lines…born in your absence…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz



Nine years have gone by
Since I damn well jilted you…
Now, is it century, year, moment?
I cannot tell…
I cannot tell,
Because afterwards,
Time, as such, ceased to exist,
Only hours,
Hours survive,
heavy or light,
And, thank the Lord’s foresight
In setting on man’s
And animal’s face
Only two eyes --
In my hours
There is no third – or middle one,
And if there were,
That third eye
(or the middle hour)
It would conjure either
A cyclopean idol
Or a monster…
My third eye --
What is it to do,
When with your two
It forms only
A triangle with a three
On each side,
While the three angles
Measure thirty
(three threes amount to one
Ordinary nine…)
Nine years have passed
Since that day
I jilted you,
My self-satisfied you –
And had no doubts
After that –
Have not doubted
Mentally, that is,
While you -- do you know
This thing called heart?
This creature,
This godless being --
How able it is
To exist without benign
Or malevolent doubt!
And since you
Are clueless,
And since you
Have entered
Only lately
My real delusion,
And since I sense that
You don’t even
Know the date
Of our severance –
Why am I still
Putting up with blame
And pangs of conscience
As to why
I did let you go
Nine years ago…

I kept it brief.
As for the rest,
Try to remember
And do not dump
On me as ‘most proper’
The steel-hard screams
Of self-flagellation.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz



Sunset, you somber sunset,
Ardent music, boundless sorrow.
New stairs, new terrace, a new abode,
Golden age of dreams, of senses…

Sunset, you ceaseless sunset,
With mementos of sadness and song.
Now fading, then flaming, setting fire
To desire. Eyes like black blades.

Sunset, sundown of memories,
Let the new world dance to a crazy beat.
You stay steadfast and high above,
You, Year of Tango, of mindless love.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz



And from day one love was deceitful,
And from day one love was deceitful,

…The boy loved the girl to excess
Always saying “you are my heart”,
And when the girl
Turned real cheap
And favored another man --
To kill her first, the boy
Pointed a gun at his own heart…

But from day one love was eternal,
But from day one love was eternal.

* * *

A blush of autumn gleams
In the almond of your sweet gaze
Stirring daydreams
in this nightmare.
In hasty response,
I am lost in the misty maze of your eyes,
Lost like an orphan
I remind myself
Of the golden castle
At the end of this road.

A blush of autumn gleams
In the almond of your sweet gaze…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz



I know this song
Is becoming stale—
You are in your bed,
I am in my shell.
We are separated
Both by cruel fate,
And this murky road
That seems not to end…
I toss and turn.
I know this wound
Can hurt to the core,
Even cold indifference
Turns livid in vain,
There is no decision,
No vacillation
In the court of sin…
I toss and turn.
Even nocturnal dreams
Are by now silent,
The bridge over the limits
Of life and demise,
The strident roses
In the fancy vase…
I toss and turn.
I know this song
Can lead us far,
Sometimes remote,
At times intimate,
Sometimes detached
At times coupled…
I am in the tranquil tent
Of the stellar dreams
Of outer space,
But what is this game?
What song is this?
I toss and turn…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I set the night-colored flowers
On the hem of your florid quilt—
All dream-hued flowers
Plucked in the dark of night…

I give the white, colorless flowers
To your vibrant dream,
For you to sleep in peace on the white sheet,
Serene as a jasmine…

Do you see
How ‘uneventful life’
Changes with love?
How you, woman,
Are blooming again,

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Emerald lucent gaze,
Single and brunette,
Not quite forty yet--
Do you feel content?

Named snow-flower,
Known by one and all,
No longer safflower--
A mere thorn in the fall…

Never got to give you
A springtime posy…
Yet it’s so cozy and true
In this modest boutique!

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


It is night. I miss you so,
Your subtle silence, searing charm,
So alluring and so calm
Like no other in this world…

It is night. I miss you so,
It seems all lights have gone out
Lest I go forth and find you --
Or perhaps, to reach you in stealth…

It is night, I miss you so,
Your serene eyes, flaming hair,
To behold unseen, and mute,
With no words, no dispute.

It is night, I miss you so,
A single touch, all lights will bloom,
And the next one can make the sun
Come out and rise above the gloom…

Yet, it is night, and I miss you so.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

Tango - From Pages of Love

I’d like to approach you someday
On a day of Easter or Sunday
To whisper a trifle or two
With unusual audacity

Then after a month or so
To snatch your ultimate pledge
As we parade -- a pair in public --
And let the rumors fly home…

Your life -- a lone lane at dusk
Just right for an easy pick-up
With piercing lustful whistles
At your lithe gait erect with pride

And your solid unyielding stance
Of unreachable dazzling beauty…
A pristine goldmine of life --
A maiden approaching forty…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


“Remember me when it rains...”
Your words
You still don’t know,
That each rain has its own color,
You still don’t know, that each corner
Has it’s own shadow.
You are yet to know,
That each single dream
Is memory yet to bloom,
And each remembrance,
A trembling reverie.

Since you don’t know,
Come, listen, behold –
I love you as much
As all showers that turn into seas,
With all the longing of veiled specters
Of all my dreams
– Now mere mementos –
And all budding memories yet to bloom.

My rain, my memory,
My dream, my love…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz



I sit and stare at your empty chair,
I miss your essence so clear, so fair,
The restless flow of your golden hair,
And the honey-yellow blouse you wear.

Sitting here I stare at your empty seat,
And I yearn to see your smile so sweet,
Your naughty eyes’ twin candles when lit,
The orb of your mouth when you open it …

* * *

So I sit and stare at your empty chair,
Sipping this coffee dark as my kismet,
That keeps us apart -- yet in its despair --
This honey-soaked lust snubs the sunset…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I am forty and you, little one, are four,
My life span is ten whole times more,
My age is ten times that of yours
Yet, I learn from you how to bloom.

You are my small bundle of spring,
My multiplied motive to live,
My fervent drive to go on living,
With you, I am young once more.

We, a devastated race and realm,
Scattered in dozens of distant abodes,
With countless woes on our rocky road,
We’ve lit again the fire in our hearth.

Each “1” from you, a roof to my “10”,
Each “10” of mine, a pillar to your “1”,
From you till me… one small family,
From me till you… living history.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


They are gathered in the room
Cozy and intimate guests
A goblet full to the brim
With booze
Silver-veiled moon

Time is far far away
All feel no pain
A narrow brook outside
Gurgles with glee…
And sings
A dark woman
(With enormous eyes)
The windowpanes
Reflect Haiastan

The delicate bride of twenty
Will bear four children
(Life will come and go
Before a future is built…)
Four boys One of them me
(A dark woman still sings)
We are not there Yet
It’s my mother’s wedding…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

“New Man”

“…Try to enter through the narrow door…”
St. Luke the Evangelist
Hit by the vicious blow
Of an outrageous life,
Nauseous of pricey fads,
And cheap deference,
Distant from bourgeois
Custom and mores,
Already aging
Way before my time…
I walk in distress,
I walk… lifeless,
headed towards the streets
of my childhood.
…And here each single moment
Is my very own --
Here a storefront
And window in lights,
There a bunch of flowers,
‘The Yellow Boutique’
And the sweet dead-end
of ‘dream’ and ‘recall’.
* * *
In the memory store,
Silent toys,
Flashing smiles
Of decked-up dolls,
Stand side by side
with soldier and car…
My maimed souvenirs --
Go away… get lost!
* * *
Hall of fantasy,
Dauntless champion,
Azure mountain-lake,
Daring on the wing,
Sporting items,
Ski, skate, javelin…
I was meant to be
king of the mountain!
* * *
Stay this way,
Always side by side,
Familiar windows
of memory and dream.

But…between the pair
A narrow door,
That is shut tight
As the lid of a sightless eye:
So, do they still stand as one?
Or, have memory and dream
split in two…?
* * *

Hit by the vicious blow
Of an outrageous life,
Nauseous of pricey fads,
And cheap deference,
Distant from bourgeois
Custom and mores,
Already aging
Way before my time …
I have vowed to enter
Through the locked door,
To unite memory
And dream… through life.

* * *
When you are livid
At your rotten luck,
Go through the narrow door and
step out as New Man.

Translated By: TATUL SONENTZ

THE CITY 1 - 2 - 3 - 4


My city of desire,
city of dreams,
there was a time
when I mused
at each and every
of your corners of light.
There was a time,
I daydreamed of
the virgin I loved,
at a time, when
all were gathered
here together.
Whatever happened
to your big shindig?
What shadow fell
on your shining face?
Which scam was it
of your spiteful luck,
that left you thus,
on your own…
my city of desire,
city of dreams…?

Can there be a more
fascinating game?
Is there a fortune
more false and frigid,
to beckon me
for a last encounter?
To show up as a stranger,
just passing by?
To appear as an alien…?
Heartfelt yearning
will draw me there…
but don’t let anyone
be there, no one
to open a gate,
not even my virgin --
let’s walk alone.
Who thinks of you now,
city of desires,
city of my dreams?
It seems they walked out
on both the quick
and the dead…

…No matter, let all go well
at your new festival
(feast or circus?
Who can tell!)
I stand here
guarding your dreams,
your possessions,
but in particular, that
which you don’t have…
I stand guard
till sleep vanishes
and untainted memory
drops in as visitor…

My city of desire,
my city of dreams…


Now, darkness
has veiled the magic city
of my yearning.
Sinful eyes glisten
in the gloom
above groping hands.
Caught in there,
a love-sick woman
goes insane waiting
for a blood red
dusky dawn.

Now, darkness
has settled on the wet
sidewalks of my longing.
Blood-red eyes
come alive in the dark,
as hands weave a nasty plot.
Blood drips down
the plucked cheeks
of my virgin of hope,
gripping my lone dream coin
in her icy fist.

Love seeks hope
in a frenzy,
and finds nothing.
Hope seeks love
to find warmth without fear,
while I seek them both,
with no faith at all…
Because darkness has
descended on the
city of my dreams.


Half-perceived cat
in the creek,
I believe it is
tainted water.
Either my eyes
are no longer keen,
or your cats are
far from clean.


An ant strolls on a drum,
it sees itself as a large army.
Echoes reaching from the rim
sound to it like a solemn hymn.

They ogle each other from skyscrapers
(the drum already a taught square),
a man, a god, in mirrored reflection,
flash thin smiles at the sculpted ant.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I don’t know whom I waited for
all my life
I don’t know what I liked
or did not like
At times I caught a faint gleam
in an eye
And shades of a dream
on another’s lips…
I saw a soft glimmer in the hair
of another
I admired yet another one’s
long limbs
Another charmed me with her
dainty steps
And another when she smiled
in silence…

I desired another one’s mere
breath and smell
As I coveted another’s marble
neck and back
Another when she got drunk
and giggled
Another one’s crystal clear
virgin tears…

I don’t know whom I waited for
all these years
I don’t know what I liked
or did not like
It may be the one who loved me
in secret
And cried her heart out
all night…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


ՉԷ՛… ՄԻ՛…

Winter is already in deep freeze
—As you said, dear soothsayer—
At this bitter moment of farewell,
I utter a last whimper…no…don’t!

The scorpion of life has stung deep,
No peaceful hour, no moment to grasp,
The scarf of illusion, threadbare,
May now unravel…no, do not gasp…

Dark looks have seared us too often,
We are now shackled in taut cuffs,
Often attempting to discard our skin
Shaking split tendons — no…don’t!

Pain has so badly torn its mask,
That darkness now despises blood
And as we seek solitude’s embrace
You shudder, shiver, spell, no…don’t!

Sometimes I wish to end this game,
I say it’s a shame, a wanton deed,
To sever all ties with one fell swoop,
As my mad soul screams, no…don’t!

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

* * *

Can you surmise
What mortal sons of Adam
Covet most in their lives?

A strong
Attractive daughter of Eve
They can depend on
And trust -- all life long…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Bright carousel of my childhood,
Since I last heard your sweet melody,
How many sinful songs I have spun!
And before tumbling to the ground
From your smooth, soothing seat,
I have suffered countless falls
At each ambush and hurdle.

I never could make out
Where that little horse was running,
Or what the long necked swan gazed at
Beckoning in the distance…

Still, in time, I did find out,
That not unlike your haunting melody,
Our lives passed in warm, childish reverie.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


You will pass by this dark street
Looking in vain for its habitat…
Hitting the road with cinders of regret
You will only find bare sidewalks…

You will swear at each other – and solicit
God for a heaven-sent drop of crimson
To absolve all your festering sins,
To cleanse countless sores and rancor…

One will say: “With me, he was chummy,”
Another will exclaim: “He was my buddy,”
A third will claim casual knowledge
Of a dejected looking derelict.

You might murmur: “He was a sick puppy,”
Or proclaim him “A wandering Jew!”
One may claim he was lovesick, too,
Yet, no one has said: “He’s my enemy.”

And when it starts to snow blue-lit flakes,
Dreams surround you with bits of memory,
You will all rush home in a big hurry
Before your home-fires go out…

Then you’ll say: “Let the ice melt first --
Come March, we shall look for that chap…”
The years will pass, empty, relentless,
And darkness will descend on earth…

You will set a table on Good Friday,
With Holy Bread and cups of wine,
You will wait for him, you will pray,
But the Poet will be held up… on a cross.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Autumn has raised its dais of gold
And spoken its decree -- “Gloom!”
Earlier, I’d decked your road with gold
To greet you with the bloom of spring.

Autumn has arrayed its golden rings
Anointing the air with… clear bias --
Lighting a lantern at a corner of the sky,
Piling fog, mist and cloud at another.

Autumn has raised its dais of gold
Setting its teeming tresses free.
It has stuck a dagger in the sun’s chest,
Flecking winter’s bright white with red…

* * *

Come spring, there will be good cheer,
Breeze and brook will simmer and sing.
A cracked goblet will thirst for wine,
And a woman’s hand will covet a ring…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


We met
On a clear evening.
The town was down with the blues,
Yet, we did not speak,
We said nothing,
Even though
we had missed each other so.

Such is life –
Hollow delirium
Striving for speech and wisdom,
Yet when uttering an “A”
It fails to connect
with any “B”…

Maybe that is good, even a must,
To keep the flame of dreams alive,
Like a wrecked vessel
laden with treasure
That does not rust
On the sands of
The shore…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I said, “Look
At that poor old
Twisted back,
Totally bent towards
The bouquet held
In his hand…

“Yes,” he replied, “but you see --
As a result,,
His nose is close
To the flowers’ smell…
There is no gain
Without pain!”

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

T h e a t r e

Old curtain of the stage,
Tireless, over countless years
You have rolled up and down,
And now your single role
Is to cover a hole.

Today, you hide a passage
To a space of backdrop-storage…
And in a gesture of kindness,
The new curtain rolls down
And veils your shabbiness…

Old curtain of the stage…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

Someone…, Sometime…

Maybe not from this place,
Of no defined race,
May surely show up.
And speak with my mouth,
and then
Compose a song of faith,
That shimmers like dreams
In the limpid blue eyes
of a smiling child…

Who speaks with my mouth
Of cracked pomegranates,
as the green rain
Cries with my eyes and
rejoices at sunrise…

Come what may --
Even under the heel of gray steel--
Someone with my hands
Will offer Bread -- Blue Bread
And Green Wine…

will emit a song of rain
from my own chest.

Someone, sometime…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

* * *

The ship of my dreams
Cast anchor deep
In the green waters
of your eyes’ ocean,
When I saw the isle
of reality
My anchor was heavy --
I remained in place.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

Wild Roses

The trace of your breasts
on my palms
Scorches like burning blood,
Your bosom’s silky smell,
mad and merciless
Carries the sad news of life…
and tidings of demise…

A life without you, alone
without the sun,
A lone life that follows…
A lifetime after you…
a demise that arrives,
And stays aroused in your core
and at your feet…

Shutters thrown open
with burning hands,
Outside, a pouring rain
In dark, gloomy sheets…
the tiny, bare garden
Shivers below and recalls
Its wild yellow roses…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I miss that rainy weather
Where your smell lingered
in your absence,
I miss that dark basement
Where your fire simmered
in your absence,
I miss that café, where
I thought I saw you – alas,
it was a shadow,
I miss that coffee cup
Where your kiss lingered
In your absence…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

Gehenna’s Sabbath

When the Creator fashioned the cosmos,
He noticed things – like in flaming sunshine,
Light was bottomless,

Rain was mirthless,
Violets shrinking,
Fire spotless…

He sensed, that the melody
Of waters falling
Was way too flat and faultless,
And that the thirst
of a sprouting seed
Exceeded that of the entire planet.

Then, God also noticed,
That He was not through
Constructing the world,
He was not yet done
with His crucial quest…

For something to reflect
His own spirit –
A haven for man,
Something bare and open,
Contentious, yet
Something that could be
simple, within grasp
And yet beset
With complexity…
And much, much more…

Therefore He concocted
basic elements,
Bestowing on them,
conjurer's skills,
He placed in the fusion
a breath of His own,
And He completed
His ultimate opus:

The soul of the poet…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I am sorting out
some songs
Left by a girl
long discarded
And the discs
are rattling
In my shaky hands…

One conjures cozy
That tickle and tease
my brain,
Another points to
a lone entry
In an old diary…

One seems to carry
the smell of rain,
Another emits
colors and hues
And with this one
I seem to soar
To the rim of rapture …

This one triggers
a desire to love
And to dissolve
once more…
That one sighs a name
that betrayed me
And loved another…

I am going through
these discs
Left by a girl
long discarded
And the songs speak
of the harvest
of sunshine years…

And here I am
caressing names
With misty eyes
asking someone --
Anyone -- for their

Translated by Tatul Sonentz


What do I want from this world…?

I want
A sweet sun,
Yellow leaves
carpeting the paths
And you, at that moment, at my side,
A moon above my house
And a child’s small crib,
A piece of holy bread on the spread…

When yearning pierces my heart
Only rainfall,

I want a word
That drains the shame
Of your love for me,
I want a word that radiates,
A word that nails me to the cross…

I want nothing from this world…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


When you have nothing to say
What is there to write about?
When you have nothing to hear
Allow me to be silent.

You are my world. Go on, depart
On your straight, correct path,
And if need be, let me bend a bit
My own rocky road…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Among my papers
I found a letter
Yet to be opened –
An invitation
From a fine girl
Lost in the shadows.

The troops of memory
Are breaching the ramparts
Of my impregnable heart…
And the little missive
Is not going back
Into its cover…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


It is nighttime, I miss you so,
Your subdued silence, simmering charm --
It seems nothing in this wide world
Has been so enticing, so docile…

It is nighttime, I miss you so,
It seems all the lights everywhere
Have gone out to conceal you from me,
Or make me reach you in stealth, in silence…

It is nighttime, I miss you so,
Your modest eyes, your golden hair --
To be gazed undisturbed, unnoticed,
No spoken word, no sentence uttered…

It is nighttime, I miss you so,
A mere touch would set lanterns alight,
Yet another touch already ablaze,
And the missing sun would suddenly rise…

And yet, it is nighttime, and I miss you…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I did not seek your attention,
I took you for that person, the one
Who had dispersed the mists of space
And reached me in my here and now…

No, you did not take me for another --
It was merely me, an alien other
Who was soon to vanish, becoming
Stranger before encounter…

But I am certain it was not you…
Yet you could have been -- had we met
Face to face, some unknown place
But not here, not now…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

R I P E N I N G 2

Come, night,
and shimmer,
Let the wet sidewalk
Around the old lodge,
and alley --
Merging the present
to the unknown…

Cold mist
at the window,
Neon lights
in the room --
Let me come clean:
It is late --
Memory smells of

Let me go – let me go
in peace…
For the last time
at your side,
Let the rain come in
through open shades
And moisten the
made-up bed…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

Poème Surprise (Startling Song)

Whenever somber,
completely alone
and deprived of hope…
Whenever I remained silent --
seeming indifferent
and remote…
Whenever red lights at crossings
looked like signals of
sudden doom…

Or when I froze in my tracks
like planted posts
of traffic-lights…
When the keen eye of my mind,
all at once turned
into dark glass,
I completely went to pieces
in this nightmare
of a town…

Whenever I stayed away from home,
convinced it was
a dark hell…
Whenever I shivered and quaked
at the fiery onset
of autumn…

You were my sole salvation,
a bright beacon
In pitch darkness…
You were the muse and the spark
that ignited to a start
this sudden song…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Mediterranean blue eyes,
Sunshine in her hair, like resurgent Phoenix...
My own hands that rebuffed the nude maiden
of Lebanon --
What makes them feel so upright...?

They should have set her bare breast alight,
Infused breath into her coral fingers... yet
With their haughty Armenian hubris,
They merely unbuttoned her garment...

Soaring Mediterranean moment --
Wings of Phoenix roasted by a reborn sun...
Silent words of disdain to a maiden of Lebanon
What makes them sound so proper...?

They should have been a sweet whisper
at her silken ear.
Soft caresses on her satin brow... yet,
With the arrogance of an ultimate oath
They asked her to leave… to forget...

* * *
A mere Mediterranean morning...
And a nagging yearning for the
paternal roof.

Translated by Tatul Sonentz


It was morning when she left,
leaving me with an entire night.
There was no yearning -- when she
left me with memories in the bud.
Was she soft, coarse – ornament, or a rose?
She was still dewy, as she took off,
leaving me with red thorns…
* * *
A single seed planted by love
can cool down entire infernos,
One single drop of a lover’s tear
can turn a desert to ocean.
Eons may come, eons may go,
Varand, your songs carry on,
imparting fire to frozen hearts,
and cooling seared ones…
* * *
A drop of wine imbibed when injured in love
is a flame shot up the arm, a bribe
To silence a lover’s suicide – a gory blade.
It is tears of sobs caused by love’s pain,
Or, when it reaches the tip of the pen,
it is – if you will – ink,
a quatrain…
* * *
As you know, a burn on living flesh smarts
and hurts with agonizing pain --
Intolerant, sensitive even to the caress
of a soothing, gentle breeze…
Imagine then the pain of a heart scorched
by the flames of searing love –
as the victim sighs: Burn me!
Burn me again!

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


…And you handed me a summons to love
not just once
but three times
and three times
I reached… rejection
If not so --
what could a few bottles
of wine do to me…?
If so --
maybe my luck will smile --
what have I done wrong in life anyway?
If not --
let it go …
with the wind…

* * *

And you handed me
a summons to love
not just once
but three times
three whole times -- no I did not decline
I arrived as expected
for I have learned
the secrets of
what is called luck
it could happen
and If it did?
Bring the wine…
(remember the blue nights
of Saint Germain…)

If it failed my dearest
the fault was neither yours
nor mine it seems…
the first time
I guess
your voice rang different
to the ear
suddenly recalling who I was
I suppose
your words acquired another tone
but this evidence was so weak and frail
it deserved no real concern
but in my breast
surged a scream
so outlandish
no one in the world could interpret.

But the second time around
there was solid proof
a credible evidence
maybe more
as shadows twisted on the wall
and the young Aznavour crooned…

All the couples were smashed
the dance had shifted to a different groove
when I took off with the booze
and wanted to light a cigarette
suddenly undetected by all
you approached…
I sniffed a mad warm scent
and as I gazed at you
like a lunatic
my lips were hit
with a demented kiss…


The dance had shifted to a different track
couples were all dead drunk now
the young Aznavour still crooned
and your request was evident…

And the third time
it was another room
not just a room
but a different flat
it was another floor
another ambiance
and again we sat facing
each other.

Each one spoke
of sizzling memory
a memory voiced in company
and bright banter…
And all at once –
your eye on your man –
you said to me -- why don’t I see you?
I never see you
even… in broad daylight
at times when
you are home alone --
and you made a point
that you always remembered me
when you put my special coffee
on the stove…
(oh dark brown snakes inside women
how do you sleep with all that coffee in you?)

* * *

…And you handed me
A summons to love
not just once
but three times
and three times my heart beat like mad
thirty years
thirty whole years
for your demented love…

Translated by Tatul Sonentz



Scents often
Remind us of things –
A certain road
A certain sunset
Remind us of certain
Eyes in the mist
A line in a song
Empathy and care…

Scents often
Spray memories
Of roots and bark
In a certain forest
Concealed behind
Layers of soil
And suddenly
It’s rained upon…

It rains gently
Cleaning the dust
The scent of the forest
Reminds you of things…

You now remember
Yet another
Which is she – yet
In another mist…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz



It is sunset
And with each lit lamp
A cool greening the color
Of a girl’s eyes swirls in me…

It is sunset
And that girl is so cool
You think just for her sake
It is worth bearing
The world’s heat and heartache…

It is sunset
The moment shudders
The world freezes
The big torch goes out
Clouds throughout
And the single lamp that dimly lit
The space between us
Blazes once more…

Which is cool
And truly cruel…
It is sunset.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


What is it that I love
in a tree?
Most certainly it is the sight
of its flight
between earth and sky.

One can approach each
and every tree,
With a different girl each time,
carve one’s memory
on each trunk
And it can keep it, expand it
over centuries
to come…

I am tree,
My branches smelt
the metal of the gold
in the sun…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


…And to begin with,
they were invincible.

Also translucent, as the mist at sunrise,
Or an azure dream -- yet everlasting.

In communion with cosmic suffering,
Garbed in the robes of ecstasy,
They take a stand
On the last (also first),
old and yet-to-be-born
lonely planet…

They are born on each daybreak,
Baptized always
in the holy rain
And bathing in the blue of the skies
They drain the goblet of life with faith
in renascent bliss.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

The Sea

The serene sea,
Truly enormous,
Kept kissing,
The blushing shore
Every minute…

The one next to me
Asked: “Would you like to be
Immense as the sea?”
Staring at the boundless blue,
I answered him:
“I like to be like a brook,
Meandering towards
A hidden future…

Let this unabashed sea
Kiss the blushing shore
For endless eons…”

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


At night, I cry and pray,
I burn a candle by my bed.
I set on fire the muted road
of sacred ruins,
a lone violet in my hand, blown in
by the blue wind…

I cry and tell my dreaming eye:
May you always bear the pain
of telling Good from Evil,
and may you be shut only
when I expire without a grave
and you rise again
as new dawn…

I pray that smiles stay
on infant lips forever,
like miracles in a dream…
I cry to spread faith
in fables and to make clowns
stop crying behind
their masks…

I pray that my hands remain clean,
with each grey hair on my head
a quest for absolution…
I do believe in the small blind dog
Waiting at its dead
master’s door…

For my toil steeped in this half loaf,
and for the missed days
lost in dreams,
tormented by my many sins
I pray at night
and I weep…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

Second Epistle

When I am laid to rest
And my earthen vessel begins to rot,
Look for me in your hope-sparked gaze,
In the brim-full, ardent glass of wine
In the multicolored sunrise,
And all the budding trees…

When I am laid to rest,
Look for me in the crystal-clear tear
Shed during spring revelry
And not in sadness…

Look for me
In fables they narrate
To children.

Look for me,
When you smile after defeat,
Beaming to life.

When I am laid to rest…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


In that remote spring,
You were springtime,
Radiant, dreamlike,
When I first met you
In fields of
Blood-red flowers…

All the girls
Born that year
Have now turned seventeen.

Those fields are now
Red again, with real blood,
And yet,
I am still
The very same
Fragile juvenile…

Even with the beard.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

* * *

They claim,
That miracles happened
Only in olden times.

I dare you,
Time almighty,
Either defeat me
With your sword of logic,
Admit defeat
And believe for good,
That miracles do happen!

Miraculous miracles…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


We stroll
Along the street in January –

A child,
With an open orange umbrella,
Marches with tiny steps,
Like the purest of
My dreams…

It is dusk
And it drizzles.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


I truly wish,
with all my heart and soul,
to be reborn with the first breath
of budding spring…

I wish to be born
with each igniting tip of every match,
to live in burning tobacco,
stirred by people in despair,
striving to ease their worries and grief
with each match-tip’s flare…

I wish to be born
with every drop of rain delivered
from the clouds’ womb,
and with them, somehow, to shower down
on the whole world, helping the parched
and the sick quench their thirst,
healing every last one of them,
and seep down and disappear
with the last tear of the destitute,

with not a drop after me
to be shed…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz

The Smile

What was it that made you
smile that way?
Was it a response to frivolous words?
Or was it prompted by a feeling
that you had
conquered me…?

You have conquered me!
Not with subtleness,
but with that odd translucence
I still hesitate to call
a smile.

Unfazed, I wanted to stand up
and face it --
that thrust of yours,
which I hesitate to label
with a mere everyday

At least, respond as conqueror!
Just what made you smile
that way?
Was it in response to frivolous words?
Or was it prompted by a feeling
that you had
conquered me…

perhaps with a certain word
that was more than
a mere smile…?

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Old stage curtain,
Tireless, over the years
You have rolled up and down,
And now your only role
Is to cover a gap.

Today, you hide a passage
To a backdrop-storage space…
And, in a gesture of kindness,
The new curtain rolls down
And covers you…

Old stage curtain…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


One night you said,
Our road is not smooth,
Its rocky, unpaved.
Another day you said,
You were so gratified
By this gift of luck
Received from God

It makes me wonder --
Is the thorn a defense,
Just a mere guardian
For the delicate rose?
Or is it by staying on
the thorny road, that
Ones heart turns to rose?

Translaed By: Tatul Sonentz


I recall a distant mirage of the deep,
Before your time, before you appeared--
A water-fairy in the mists of the seas,
Or maybe a pixie, fluttering in the breeze.

Yearning for something as yet undefined,
I nurtured a desire long before your birth,
I yearned for something that did not exist,
Since you, till then, were yet to be seen

Then, now formed, you came on the scene.
I have gazed on many a model of yours,
Always by the sea, unclad and clean,
Like a foam-cleansed, luminous agate

You finally arrived and set foot on earth,
Achieving perfection -- unblemished purity.
Then I understood what was on my mind,
That unknown desire, that yearning to find

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


Let my love -- a sharp rapier -- prick your heart,
Let your nipples sputter on your breasts,
May the remembrance of your bleeding sorrow
Bring flames, along with soothing salve.

May the time of leering arrive on time,
Meeting at a distant, intimate place --
You, an actress, I, an attending deacon,
Let us celebrate the sacraments of blood…

… Let my love -- a sharp rapier -- prick your heart,
May it bring fire, along with healing salve,
May you relive the arousal of roses on fire,
May your nipples sputter on your breasts…

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


For you, Muse,
For your eyes,
For your hair,
For your brow,
I bring you my last,
My most intense,
Song of madness
As my flaming heart--
To illuminate
My last path,
My last evening,
My last great pain--
Yearning for your
Lofty stature
To be my night’s
Blazing lighthouse.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz


There are lives in life that amount to nothing,
Along all manner of things unworthy of life,
That is what mindless history
Tells us, restless in the endless
Conflict of life and death.

There is life in this life that is true being,
Along with not being
Solid and in place,
And for that reason
We mourn–
Albeit another’s
Worthy life’s–
Each and every passing moment,
But we don’t lament
The untimely snapping
Of a knave’s, rake’s,
Coward’s or crook’s
Gray thread of life
Over the centuries…

There are lives in life that amount to nothing,
Along all manner of things unworthy of life.

If meant to be—
Be apostle-like;
If not to be—
Let it be on the cross;
To be—don’t be
Like a tyrant,
Rather be like the mighty blow
That brings down
His shadow,
Statue and idol…

There are lives in life that amount to nothing,
Along all manner of things not meant to be,
Therefore our quest is never that,
There be a myriad lives,
Regardless of life’s brevity.

Translated By: Tatul Sonentz