Jaan Kaplinski

1941 / Tartu, Estonia

The lilac

The lilac branches are swaying in the wind
and shadows creep across the floor from the open balcony door,
swaying too. Today I washed the windows
and was sad for a long time: suddenly everything
was so close by, so clear, so much here and now,
that my own being distant became more evident,
more desolate. Is it really only in a forest
in the late autumn that I've met friends, chickadees and spruce?
Have I met myself there? Where does this sadness come from?
The sun moves on, The wind dies down.
The shadows of the lilac branches keep swaying on the bookshelf
before vanishing.
217 Total read