5 Poems
by Bernard Bador
translated by Clayton Eshleman

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Between The Shifty Perspectives

of the quartered fan
flows the fire of chthonian polders
overflowing with oyster-roses.

In a California motel
a hispid penis in blue heat
perfuses the butterfly-swell
of a convulsive wedding.

At the bottom of a labial cave,
lit up by broiling ivory heat,
an unfledged bird pecks at a third eye
melted in the tepid phosphorescence.

Counterpoint rakes the slow-motion
circles of the serpent thinker’s sagittal
dance on transvestite gravel
obsessed with adumbrating moss.

Two camel spiders
weaned of lunar whey
seal the mammilla
curdled under snapping
messengers from ruptured bladders

The waters have broken
O the lull of thighs!

Who will restrain the haughty
solace of turbulent
springheads returning to their sources?


Secret Capital

An intense
listens to the wheelwork
of a Sanskrit saga.

But how can language matter at all
when blood cowers
on the axis of meditation?

Capsizings in dry dock for this wingless bird
migrating to itself, thirsty for the invisible.

The obsessed moon
forces its meanders under
caravans of eyelids bearing red trees
shed of absence.

Annelids dare to dance
and their metameres
drag away the mummies after
an awful banquet during which the sea choked
while returning to the vomitorium.

A choir begs the wind
to make the marble germinate
but a smile alone
launches the apocalypse of spongy crosses.


Universal Speleology

Cathedrals engulfed under cobras
allow the peppery will-o’-the-wisps to escape

Ready to boogie under your eyelids
you’ll find tarantulas weaving treacherous transparencies
in which daredevil termites are heaped

Watch out for snapping trunkless heads,
they’re on a quest for decayed souls.

With a sulfuric puff the apprentice sorcerer
in the garden of black flowers
crystallizes the harmony in sacred cow-dung
while watching a hill of ants harvesting snow,
a vital spice for that palace of egg layers.

O the princely dervish taste-buds
along the narrow crest of vaginal waves,
whirlwind snatchers of surfer tongues!

So many forgotten basilicas in the genitals of caverns!

Drop down onto your back, mouth open,
to receive from the stalactites, drip by drip,
the thick menstrual loess inundating
The Planet of the Frost-Clawed Bears


Ramapithecus and Consorts

In one man’s excavation were found prayers
hammered into dorsal columns
and compressor words in his dried-out brain.

Flies are lying in wait for
the echo of horoscopes across the shaved
pubes of adolescent pythonesses
offering themselves to eagles

You could smash your jaws
against the musical breakwater,
the stolid invention of extraterrestrials,
those absentee assassins of Bolero and consorts.

O the lethal whining of monks in epileptic ecstasy
as they drill into the innermost being
of a choir of throat-slashed seagulls
at the pistil-point of a sweet, irrepressible ascent

Snow-swollen gongs gush from the sweat of bumblebees,
a new unseizable species.
So you become a stupified entomologist
confronting the eddies of their wadded tears.

A woman incarnates it.
Her incarnadine
antipodal grotto closes over you,
the prisoner of liberty.

Death—is it not this unbearable joy
in which is enchased
inaccessible, blown-out mountain ranges
burped out of neurons?

A brick-furred monkey celebrates New Year,
capering through the shade of
the marasmoid kingdom where we lie,
wind troglodytes
inseminated with the solitude of the masses.

Now, when will they start manufacturing angels?



In the ciboria of the towers
are piled our castrated brains,
open wounds quashing the dreams of bats,
mute pilgrims bouncing off karmic wheels

Even the echoes of absence
vanish in the public quicksand,
the secret toll of a solar circus
in which the last robot grapples with gladiators

To monitor the slump of our lice-eaten
tongues we must awaken
the recumbent cyclopes under
the ignorant skins of millennia in labor

Stunned rats will hatch
between the sunset’s gums.