My life, this is all you are. This narrow space
between the enormous past and the inchoate
future. This minute, which has already
passed, this word, which is already null,
this body, which dies incessantly
with each word. I may have found solace
in language or memory, an alley in Paris
or in Prague, in Kafka or in Proust.
Mirror of the senses, they will disappear
with me, as with all time, space, and death,
these enchanted vectors of the soul.
I move in the world with all of my body,
through the labyrinth made of one
straight line. The inconceivable
infinities no longer bother me. This moment
is all I believe in, October and the dry leaves
blowing where I'm heading, a storm
rushing to presage me. At the crucial junctures
someone will already know my name.
The earth will again unfold its heart
of sulfur, and I will be born
into the recurring terror, inescapable
being, to which I eternally return.
May these small tokens prove that I tried
my best, though human cruelty made no sense
to me, though love was inexplicable, more
phantom than reality. If forgiveness be true,
I want to be annihilated completely,
I want reciprocal forgetting,
I want the angels not to recognize me.