If the night deposits you at the sea’s high line
Do not offend the sea in you by running ancient gods aground
Only flowers know how to climb eternity
We call you wounded earth O how brief our time
Will be, like the water whose bed cannot be seen
Song of water piled on the water of that sorrowful evening
You are sweet to the one you distance from your night
Like a too-heavy pebble buried on the shores of midnight
I aimed my oars between the islands I named you
Long before you assigned me sanctuary and breath
I named you Ungraspable and All-Fled-Away
Your laughter separated the blue waters from the unknown waters

                                                                       * * *

      I named you wounded Earth, whose rift is ungovernable, and I clothed you in
threnodies uprooted from the recesses of yesterday
      Crushing dust and hurtling down my words to the pens and pushing the mute
gray bulls to the edges
      I dedicated to you a people of the wind where, in your silence you capsize so
that earth, you create me
      When you rise in your color, where there is a crater ever in leaf, visible in the

– Edouard Glissant. excerpt from For Mycea

translated by Brent Hayes Edwards