A Word about Man
sebiljandricmak-dizdar

A Word about Man

FIRST

Wrought within the body sewn into the hide
You’re dreaming of the sky once more spreading wide

Within the brain enclosed in the heart detained
Ever dreaming sunlight but by darkness stained

Prisoner of flesh imprinted into bone
Can you bridge the distance

To the heavens’ throne?

SECOND

Caged by the ribs in silver’s grip you rest
No better than a serf even at your best

Wrought within the body sewn into the hide
You dream earth becoming heaven’s willing bride

Wrenched away from heaven you crave bread and wine
But will it feel like home

This abode of thine?

THIRD

Of the flesh your box is of the bones your crate
Sharp bones that your tender flesh will perforate

Wrenched away from heaven you want wine and bread
But it’s smoke and rocks that everyone is fed

Just one of the two hands bends to your will
The one that seems to wish

The other to kill?

FOURTH

Within the brain enclosed in the heart detained
Ever calling sunlight but by darkness stained

Praying that your soul close to heaven should pass
While your drunken body staggers through the grass

Within your roots ingrown in your blood immersed
In this painful circle

Are you last or
First?

FIFTH

In this painful circle neither first nor last
You are vultures’ playground and maggots’ repast

Seized by the body for tomb you plant the seed
Is there hope for body to

Turn into deed?

Published with permission from the Mak Dizdar Foundation

Translated by Bruno Ogorelec
© 2012 Bruno Ogorelec

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