Allegro by Tomas Tranströmer

I play Haydn after a black day
and feel a simple warmth in my hands.

The keys are willing. Soft hammers strike.
The resonance green, lively and calm.

The music says freedom exists
and someone doesn’t pay the emperor tax.

I push down my hands in my Haydnpockets
and imitate a person looking on the world calmly.

I hoist the Haydnflag – it signifies:
“We don’t give in. But want peace.”

The music is a glass-house on the slope
where the stones fly, the stones roll.

And the stones roll right through
but each pane stays whole.

From: http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/literature/laureates/2011/transtromer-poetry_allegro.html

Date: 1962 (Swedish);1997 (translated)

By: Tomas Tranströmer (1931-2015)

Translated by: Robin Fulton Macpherson (1937- )

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