Poems From The Portuguese
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Margarida Ferra

(B. 1977)

Margarida Ferra’s deceptively simple and contained poetry pays careful attention to the universe of the home and, as if collecting plants for a herbarium, it both reflects the makings of life and the makings of poetry in which the metaphors for roots, branches and blossom, as well as those for thorns, knives and scissors acquire a very especial meaning.

Margarida Ferra lives in Lisbon where she works as a publisher. She has a degree in Journalism and Communication from the Universidade de Lisboa.

Poetry books since 2000:

Curso Intensivo de Jardinagem (2010), Sorte de Principiante (2013)

Poems

Write whenever you need

21 Setembro, 2018By bitcliq

Write whenever you need to let me know
there is ice on your hands and on the inside of the fridge.
The vegetables I brought yesterday
won’t survive more than one frost,
and neither will we.
Write whenever you need to, you may
tell me again that winter never came,
that this year there won’t be any summer,
that we are and are not here because we don’t know
whether we are us or those
four people who are going out now,
having found the right door.

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7

Yesterday you fell asleep, we
still had all the knives in our mouths,
three unused.
One stood
geometrically balanced
on the contours of the lips.
I don’t know who owned
those lips out of which
the still blade prevented
harsh words from coming
and, later on, the nightmares.
Another knife, the one I held in my hand,
I dropped before reaching
that floating rib
next to the heart.
In the morning there was only us, cold,
and the memory of ashes in the street.
The third knife was as if it had never been.

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Common name: Poets’ Jasmine

I roamed the city gardens by evening
searching for the proper
flowers – sustained, they climb
and spread tea-scented memories
throughout the irregular streets.
I carried with me some nail scissors,
inadequate and superfluous since
I didn’t cut anything that lived.
I was left with loose sentences,
folded pages, uneven chairs
and empty dishes laid out
for stray cats.

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Preparing the ground

At last I bought
the flower pot, now sitting
on the kitchen window sill.
Between the cupboard and the sink,
it may perhaps be good
still
to welcome swallows and herbs.
The wind will bring me
all this as well as
exhaust pipes, escaping carbon monoxide.

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