Friday, April 20, 2012


(image by theKika)

Houve um tempo
em que precisávamos
de apenas cem passos
para tocar um ao outro:
teus braços, extensão 
do meu corpo.
Teu coração batendo
no meu peito.
O universo na calçada
na frente de casa.

Até você abrir caminho
entre as estrelas
e viajar lado a lado
com cometas.

todo dia alguém descobre
uma nova galáxia,
um exoplaneta:
as distâncias 
ficam cada vez maiores,
envelheço à janela
esperando que você volte.

It once took us 
only one hundred 
steps to touch 
each other:
your arm
an extension 
of my body,
your heart
beat in my chest.
The universe chalked
on the sidewalk
at the front door.

Then you opened roads
among stars to 
run the outer space
side by side with 

Now everyday 
someone discovers
a new galaxy,
an exoplanet.
We grow more
and more apart,
I grow old  looking
out the window.

(I miss the time when the things I loved were all close.) 


  1. perfectly sad imagery. (this phrase should never exist, perfectly sad.

    as we grow our worlds grow. is everything always growing apart? or at some point, at the point of dissolve, do we then return to one another?


    1. Erin, I was reading Edgar Morin's lessons in education for the future this morning and I ran into this: We are born of the cosmos, of nature, of life, but our humanity, our culture, our mind, our consciousness, has made us strangers to this cosmos that remains secretly intimate to us. Our thought, the very consciousness by which we know this physical world, carries us as far away from it. The very fact that we consider the universe rationally and scientifically separates us from it. We have evolved beyond the physical, living world. And in this beyond, humanity spreads its wings.

      I need to believe at some point we'll all return to one another, that we'll have first, maybe second chances.

      (lump in the throat. watery eyes)

      Kiss you.

  2. Parece que você leu meus sentimentos e os traduziu em poema. Adorei!

    1. Compartilhamos do mesmo universo. <3

  3. Parece ser normal que com o tempo as distancias fiquem longas demais e a espera custe a suportar.

    Muitos dias ficamos lentos esperando por um regresso mais amigo e reconfortante.

    1. Eu tento não pensar muito nas distâncias e as coisas que elas separam de mim, mas há dias que é impossível não sonhar à janela.

  4. Time there must have been when 100 steps seemed far away, but nothing when compared to light years. This is a heart-breaker, Kenia.

    1. Units of measurement are changing fast. Think of MB, GB, and now TB for instance. Space stays the same, men reinvent distances.

      Kiss you beauty.

  5. for me, this is one of your best poems, these images perfectly capturing the melancholy of losing that world of childhood where everything was so close and easy to love. (and i recently learned the word saudade -- if i've gotten it right, this is a perfect example, isn't it?)

    and i love how the poem builds on contemporary scientific understanding of an expanding universe. time is an arrow that points to everything constantly becoming farther from everything else, to increasing isolation and loneliness ....

    of course, i also come here to meditate on translation as a living process :-) i like the ending of the english version much better. esperando que você volte is implied already without saying it, and i think the ending is stronger for letting the implication stand on its own. i have no idea how this tension between expression and implication might feel in portuguese, but it is fascinating to watch you making these choices in moving from one lanugage to the other!!

    1. don't know much what to say besides 'thank you'. I'm really thankful for you stopping by and reading me. Because you do. :)

  6. O passo deixou de ser uma distância.

    1. O problema são as unidades de medida ficando cada vez maiores.

  7. wow, you take a sentiment and then expand it in just the way that saddens you, magically accomplished

    1. Tom,

      thanks for stopping by and caring enough to leave such a lovely comment. I am a sad person I guess. I wish I could always share happiness and hope, but I still have to set my eyes to search for these things. They are like fireflies to me, they hide in places I don't often visit. Maybe when I grow old and move into the countryside or a mountain top. I'll meet them then.

      Thanks again. :)

  8. I really love this poem, it has the essence of may of the odes I read while building my craft... and it is amazing to experience it in two tonues. Thank you for sharing this.

  9. So beautiful, full of longing... I especially like the first stanza.

  10. I enjoyed reading the Spanish as well as the English interpretation. Both sound lovely rolling off my tongue. One hundred steps, universe chalked on the sidewalk, growing old looking out the window---these are all powerful images. This is fantastic.

  11. "your arm
    an extension
    of my body,
    your heart
    beat in my chest."

    I love the intimacy and closeness of this contrasting with the rest galactic, Kenia! Great poem!!

  12. this could well have been named 'the astronomer's wife'.lovely lines.quite moving.reminds me of a bengali line which might be translated as "just like stars, we grow lightyears apart"...same feelings, different spaces...the incredible unity of literature!

  13. exquisite! this line really spoke to me: "The universe chalked
    on the sidewalk
    at the front door."

  14. It doesn't happen all at onece either...kind of lulls you into a sense that its alright til one day, whoops, noone is close anymore. I so love your stuff.

  15. A distância mais dolorosa é a que não se mede com réguas... Quando o coração se distancia, aí sim... estabelece-se a verdadeira e cruel distância...
    Lindo como sempre Kenia...
    Beijo e boa semana!

  16. I feel the sadness..I too feel the pain of things being so far away. I lived away from my parents for years. I missed so much and now they are gone. This was sad but so beautiful.

  17. I like the contrast of the closeness and distance, and use of outer space as metaphor.

    Nice work ~

    Also wanted to let you know that my piece is for your wednesday challenge last week. Thanks for a wonderful prompt on Ana.

  18. This is wistful, melancholy without descending into saccharine weepiness. There is no screaming or rending of garments, and the piece is more powerful for that.

  19. Really good work here. I love the translation and the original side by side. Many times I feel poetry can only truly be harnessed in it's original tongue, and how certain languages make anything sound like beauty echoing off the page. And rarely do I find the translations ever matching the wonder I find in the original voice, but your's is fantastic. Such an amazing write here. Thanks

  20. Ooooh I love it. Anytime you can use astronomy in poetry, I'm there! Especially if you do it so beautifully!

  21. Sad but written in a beautiful way. We should keep our stars close : )

  22. Oh how I feel this...nicely done.


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