Thursday, October 31, 2013


A Greek peasant, gift of the Peloponnese
moves to the United States as a small child.
He sees television for the first time.
He examines the set closely.
He asks his parents how people got inside such a small box

[E. A. Costa 31 October 2013]

Friday, October 25, 2013

Any Exit Is An Exit

Any exit is an exit.

Any egress is an egress.

Duchamp's door is an incitement
to go through the wall—no less, no more.

That's all, folks.

This way to the excitement.

This way to the wall.

And as you pass

don't forget the mustache.

[E. A. Costa 25 October 2013]

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Middle Solstice (Winter in Granada, Nicaragua 2013)

(dedicated to Alvaro Rivas)


Across the desert of salt-sea
swan-necked camel
drinks the metaphor of his hump
bearing unimaginable answers
to questions never asked.

There are no years. Only egg moons and tortoise suns
losing seasons slowly in the see-saw.

Days and nights are drawn between grandmasters
and every bluff is called.

Where goes Spring where Spring has never been,
where goes Autumn where no Etruscan duels to the death
over necropolis?

Where sleep Spanish before
Columbus discovers the hammock?
Bells swing in new air--ever level:

¡Gracias a Dios hemos salido de esas honduras!—“Thank God,
we have left that dark & backward abysm....”

Swinging in warm air--¡Gracias a Dios!

Is there not invoked therefore
the rule of threefold repetition:
one Summer, as everywhere hot?
And the winter of twin sisters—one warm torrential rain
and other mirrored as a secret undercloak
like an ancient Christmas in Mexico?

Just what climate is worn under the skin?

What year are skulls knit and bones born?

It is not a question of checkmating Borges:
sighted or blind stand reversible seasons
like upside down Europeans.

Jaque mate!

Here at the center of the center,
here in a Mandelbrot set of isthmuses fresh and salt,
here at wasp waist corseted by lost and found oceans...


What the world new and old is missing
is objective comedy—

Columbus the compact car
out of which emerges an endless line of clowns

Marco Polo the cosmonaut shot out of Italy like a new Midas
to discover the Golden Horde.

What is the exact date Britain discovers Hindus?

Where is landfall?

Does tribesman tattooed in woad
mark the side of his wheelbarrow?


When all is said and done blasphemy is an absurdly simple proposition:

first--create an inner speech of any number of elements;

second—combine & permute;


THE CHRONICLE (September 13, 2013):

slighty west
of El Malecón
was dedicated
a monolith of polished black granite
with the full face of Rubén Darío in bas-relief
looking up La Calle Calzada toward the center of the ancient city of Granada.

El Malecón means “the jetty”.

The jetty thrusts into the freshwater sea.

Calzada means “road” or “heeled”.

On the reverse
of the monolith
facing the jetty
in large letters
is Darío's La Fe:

En medio del abismo de la duda
lleno de oscuridad, de sombra vana
hay una estrella....

et cetera, et cetera, et cetera


Here winter is the rhythm of rain
coming and going like clockwork
day and night.

Here winter is the rhythm of rain
on tiles and corrugated roofing
with complex subplots on bamboo
and barrels

on broad leaves in inner gardens

on concrete as old as Romeo

on streets and sidewalks,

rain that sings and talks

that stops and chats

that whispers and clatters

that bellows

that drowns

that cools and cleans

that lightens with monstrous thunderclaps
while a middle-aged woman waits
under eaves
sees her chance
signs the cross
and dashes through downpour in fear of electrocution.

Now and then there are miracles—how harnessed horses
stay dry and docile while the teamster bails

how (it seems) it never hails

how dogs disappear...


If rain is tears
time is interlinear.

If rain is mercy
space is transversal.

If rain is season
it is a station of the cross.


THE CHRONICLE (September 13, 2013):


until today September 13, 2013 the main feature of El Malecón was

a statue of El Fundador
Francisco Hernández de Córdoba
back to the freshwater sea
and facing west along La Calle Calzada to the center of the ancient city of Granada.

This dramatic prospect is now interrupted by the backside of the monolith of Rubén Darío,
drunkard and admitted poet
no child of Granada
founder of nothing....

[E. A. Costa 15 October 2013]

Monday, October 7, 2013

Atardecer (Gabriela Mistral)

Siento mi corazón en la dulzura
fundirse como ceras:
son un óleo tardo
y no un vino mis venas,
y siento que mi vida se va huyendo
callada y dulce como la gacela.

Gabriela Mistral

I feel my breast
melting like beeswax
into the sweetness.

My veins are slow green oil
rosed by no wine

and I sense my life
taking flight quieted and sweet
like the gazelle.

[Tr. E. A. Costa 7 October 2013]

Friday, October 4, 2013

The Vozhd

"There are different orders of illusion," said the Vozhd.

He sat on a stump by the fire, looking through the flames. His voice compelled the others to listen without turning toward him, lest the spell be broken.

The first veil covers what is there", he said.

No one spoke. They watched the flames trying to see what he saw. It was as if the fire were speaking.

A blackened finger of burning birch cracked, sending sparks into the darkness.

The second veil hides another veil," he said.

There was an invisible nod from those sitting in the dimness. They stared at the fire, ears reaching out for the next sentence.

The third veil hides nothing," he said, "It is the true veil of veils."

Unseen faces turned toward him. He sat like a stone, gazing into tongues of red and yellow fire.

[E. A. Costa September 2013]

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

At The Center Of The Earth....

                            "En cada planeta hay un cielo y un infierno...."

                                                       Francisco de Asís Fernandez

At the center of the earth
does the falling rain clatter
upon itself?

Does the body electronic
pass through two doors
at the same time like Siamese twins
shot out of a cannon at the circus?

Let the left hand ask the right
cheek to cheek
like salmon swimming upstream.

Poet dances with whatever planet
weighing everything, weighing nothing....

[E. A. Costa 1 October 2013]