Carl-Christian Elze - Two Poems

from the wonder in this space

Translated by Caroline Wilcox Reul

they celebrate the resurrection of the lord because they
are filled with fear secreted by brains full of miracles.
the miracle of fear is the most tormenting miracle:
every head wishes for cake and only finds crumbs
under the table .. but who sits at this table
and eats, and what has been placed on this table in order
to be eaten, whether there is a table cloth and what pattern
it has, whether there is a vase and what flowers are
in it, whether there is even someone at this table
who eats and becomes lost in flowers, in patterns
cannot be known. only this: a frightened animal
cowers under the table, under the massive table top
that blocks every ray of light, allowing only crumbs
or would-be crumbs, to fall down, in crevices
where eyes peck at them, trembling sparrows
but when they arrive in the recesses of bony skulls
as optical refraction and electrical 
encoding, all these crumbs, or would-be crumbs
are transformed into the same old, inscrutable, sweet
deadly foods that always fall downward                               
always down and never back up –


how still everything seems
in this fleeting space,
all creatures
flaking away bit by bit
on this hurtling sphere.
how still everything seems
on the crust of a lonely missile
thin as breath, covered
to the peaks in dust.
how still everything seems
till the slam
and beyond.

Karolinn FiscalettiIssue 1