"The Skerry" by Knut Hamsun

my translation of "Skærgaardsø" from Det Vilde Kor, 1904

The boat drifts now
towards a skerry,
an isle in the sea
its shores luxuriant.
Flowers grow there
never before seen,
they stand like strangers
and watch my landing.

My heart is more and more
like a mythic garden
with flowers like these
on the island.
They talk with one another
and whisper strangely,
like children meeting
with laughter and curtsies.

Perhaps I was here
at the dawn of time
as a white Spiraea
waiting to be found.
That fragrance I know
from long ago,
I tremble amidst
my memory of it.

I close my eyes,
the recollection passes
my head falls
towards my shoulder.
The night is thickening
over the island,
the sea is thundering —
Nirvana's thunder.

1 comment:

  1. That sea takes and gives it all. It sucks it all. You die at sea and that makes it all so fucking happy.


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