Elegy on the Death of Vicente Aleixandre, Translation of Carlos Bousono’s poem: Elegia en la muerte de Vicente Aleixandre


Elegy on the Death of Vicente Aleixandre, Translation of Carlos Bousono’s poem : Elegia en la muerte de Vicente Aleixandre
 
(Born in 1923, Carlos Bousono, a renowned prize-winning Spanish poet and eminent theoretician on the aesthetics of poetry, held the Chair of Stylistics at the Central (Complutense) University of Madrid. ; later as E-meritus.
He wrote his doctoral dissertation, in 1950, on the poetry of Vicente Aleixandre, the recepient of the 1977 Nobel Prize for Literature. It is evident, he witnessed the Nobel laureate’s passing in 1984. Bousono’s every lecture, delivered off the cuff, earned him an indomitabe world-wide reputation. T. Wignesan)
 
              In Death
 
Eyes that kept looking
so full of pain
on the last day, hardly moments
before dying,
and from the deathbed
he recalled in sadness,
from far away, very far away though somewhat hazily,
those days with his friends,
out there in the distance
of his childhood,
having himself a great time,
life even then being immortal,
they (may have) roamed through small orchards, or through the
       pinewood, or the soaring heights
bathed palpitatingly in the light.
 
Then to run, concealing themselves,
in the rear of some thickets, awhile :
why were they not being called to
yet from the house.
A little later, a little later feeling really lonesome
for the very last time, and that would be it.
 
And when they put
a crown on his head as on the king of the world
the day when it all came to pass
the king* had reigned for seven years,
seven years as lord
over everyone in the universe : the air, the sea.
He breathed. He looked tired
and the impossibility. Life, the crown,
painted cardboard, feeling yet happy,
later in love, in the company
of those slinging shots, such happiness. Years without
         knowing doubt, and all that was
just an instant so lonely,
bitter grief
real.
And now the tears –
he who never cried – filled his eyes,
sliding down ever so slowly
over his pale cheeks,
soaking the skin,
the mouth,
and continued sliding
even though he was already dead.
                           The tears lasted longer
than his sorrow-laden eyes.
Much longer
than his own pain.
 
·      Probably a reference to King Juan Carlos of the House of Bourbon.
 
© T. Wignesan – Patis, 2013
 
 

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