Saturday, March 29, 2014

Song At Capri (Canción en Capri)

When beauty grows too great to bear
How shall I ease me of its ache,
For beauty more than bitterness
Makes the heart break.

Now while I watch the dreaming sea
With isles like flowers against her breast,
Only one voice in all the world
Could give me rest. 

Sara Teasdale

Canción en Capri

Cuando la belleza crece
demasiado bella para aguantar,
¿Cómo me aliviaré del dolor?--
puesto que más que la amargura
rompe el corazón belleza...

Y mientras miro la mar que sueña
con las islas como flores en el seno,
en todo el cosmos hay sólo una voz
que me podría dar la paz.

Tr. E. A. Costa 29 March 2014

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Death Of A Poetry Generator

As every child knows who has ever owned
an articulated toy, articulation has its limits...”

                                                (Pablo Gervás)

From the tree
adjoining grammar
hang electronic tongues
humming binaries
of despair:

does not

So hellish tag,
long ago elled and held

Approach now this easy task
and bask as laureate in golden

humming humming humming

until the power is cut
and the distance algorithm
bites the surface of the sea
drowning measured isomorphisms
like rats and sailors.

Mere peasants
gather drift wood
on electric shores
scavenging platinum
for their hollow teeth.

She bathing
nude in sweet water

She bathing
nude in sweet water

She bathing
nude in sweet water....

Order now the spectrum search
goal-directed to uncover syntax.

Order now the evaluation functions
that measure stress among genes.

Order now your propositional
semantics & sublet the machine to say
one beautiful word like

amor-roma or cellar door or

die one more smiling death
with pistol in the air

capturing a lagoon of

you programmers
suicide from grief

that poetasters
who create knots in sheepskin cape
and long-daggered

shot the young Lermontov through
the heart

on his endless turntable

bleeding needles.

E. A. Costa 27 March 2014 Granada, Nicaragua

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Dancing In The Desert (Chaco Canyon)

Barefoot in blue moonlit sand

we clear the night of fear

dancing dead centuries
of the desert floor alive once more

pounding rhythmically
with hip and paw, belly and claw

creating earthquakes
of rattlesnake

and foaming lava of scorpion

until grass flowers

and the ghosthunters rise

until the buffalo below

rise up and roam...

E. A. Costa 27 March 2014 Granada, Nicaragua 

Sur Amertume

Bitter is clean
and streamlined
like unsugared

Bitter is brief
like a screech
with no aftertaste
or time to waste.

Sleek is bitterness
like leek-green cress
riding an icy stream.

E. A. Costa 26 March 2014 Granada, Nicaragua

Saturday, March 22, 2014

A New History Of Sleep

Sleep is lost to no purpose
in games between games.
Waking is not the container of thought,
sleep not the container of dreams.

Consider the porpoise who swims two cycles,
left and right, with one ear open and awake,
the other circling sound asleep.

Stand one-legged like a tribesman
guarding sheep

or like a Greek leaning on his spear
exactly half asleep.

Walk a thousand miles alone
night and day

and doze triangulating as the world awakes.

E. A. Costa 23 March 2014 Granada, Nicaragua

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Colorado Rockies

Darkness scales the heights.

Swordpoints of sunlight cut the sky.

Ever so slowly dusk bleeds stars

over the pyramids of night.

There is nothing to say.

We pitch the tent and light the stove.

Cooking food is a stranger here,

embraced lovingly and devoured.

We eat & couple & retire.

Moonless dreams and nightmares

circle  the cocoon.

We are mummies here,

every night lying quiet

for ten thousand years.

E. A. Costa  March 18, 2014

Sunday, March 9, 2014

La canción del jinete (García Lorca)

En la luna negra
de los bandoleros,
cantan las espuelas.

Caballito negro.
¿Dónde llevas tu jinete muerto?

...Las duras espuelas
del bandido inmóvil
que perdió las riendas.

Caballito frío.
¡Qué perfume de flor de cuchillo*!

En la luna negra
sangraba el costado
de Sierra Morena.

Caballito negro.
¿Dónde llevas tu jinete muerto?

La noche espolea
sus negros ijares
clavándose estrellas.

Caballito frío.
¡Qué perfume de flor de cuchillo!

En la luna negra,
¡un grito! y el cuerno
largo de la hoguera.

Caballito negro.
¿Dónde llevas tu jinete muerto? 

Federico García Lorca

The Song Of The Rider

Under the black moon
of the bandoleros sing
and jingle spurs.

Little black pony--
where are you taking
your dead rider?

The hard biting spurs
of the motionless bandit
who has dropped the reins.

Cold little pony--
how fragrant the knife flowers!

Under the black moon
bleeds the flank of the darkling
Sierra Morena.

Little black pony--
where are you taking
your dead rider?

The night spurs
its black haunches stealing
off with the stars.

Cold little pony--
how fragrant the icicle flowers!

Under the black moon--
a shout! And the long sharp horn
of the campfire.

Little black pony--
where are you taking

your dead rider?

tr. E. A. Costa March 9, 2014 Granada, Nicaragua
*Flor de cuchillo is also known as dientes de dragón and uñas
de gato in Spanish, as well as the icicle plant in English.

Thursday, March 6, 2014


Estábamos tan lejos de la vida
Que el viento nos hacía suspirar


Inútilmente hemos huido
El invierno cayó en nuestro camino
Y el pasado lleno de hojas secas
Pierde el sendero de la floresta

     Tanto fumamos bajo los árboles
     Que los almendros huelen a tabaco


Sobre la vida lejana

Alguien llora

Y la luna olvidó dar la hora

Vicente Huidobro (Poemas articos)


We were so far from life
the wind made us sigh:


We flew in vain.
Winter fell our way
and a past filled with dry leaves
lost its track through forest.

     We smoke so much under the trees
     the almonds smell like tobacco.


Over life faraway

a body weeps

and the moon forgot to sound the hour.

Tr. E. A. Costa 6 March 2014 Granada, Nicaragua