That’s her, they say, the poet,
and stare intensely at my face in silence.
Some are disappointed to see me
in my old, formless and plain dress.

That’s her, they say, the poet,
nothing unusual, she’s just a mortal woman.
Perhaps people would like to see
wings on my shoulders, my face luminescent.

You said nothing, but you noticed me,
you took my hand, trembling and docile.
At that instant, from the depths of my true heart
I loved you so. . .

–  Shushanik Kurghinian. That’s Her, They Say

translated by Shushan Avagyan



An intense blue devours my fingers
and eyes whole, they become ocean and flow
and I am lost: no doors
but the keys continue
hanging from my hands.

– Lívia Natália. excerpt from Sometimes

translated by John Keene


Send me word, if you can,
“The moon is full, the house is clear.”
Send me word, and paradise
Shall be nearer, and your uncertain face
Shall seem more recent.
Send for me if your day
Is as long as your night. If it’s true
Without me you see nothing but monotony.
If you remember the gleam of tides
Some pale red fish
In certain seas
And my wet feet, send me word:
“It’s a moonless night”
And dressed in light, I come to see you again.

– Hilda Hilst. from Joy, Memory, Novitiate of Passion

translated by Beatriz Bastos