Poetry in Translation

Then

even more
endless days
laden with
garish images
laden with
exhaustion
that swallows
everything

all the garbage
the
bile in the throat

the dried up
yellow
of lemon peel

 

(deutsches Original „DANN“, from Marco Sagurna: „MINIMAL – Gedichte“, © Pop Verlag 2019; translated into English by Deirdre McMahon)

Hunt

the hunt is on
no haze rests
on lush meadows
gun-smoke
even at breakfast time
the hunt is on
houses tremble
it’s frantic
day
and night
no one sleeps
no mountain rambles
rivers rupture
nobody gets
winded

 

(deutsches Original „ES“, from Marco Sagurna: „MINIMAL – Gedichte“, © Pop Verlag 2019, translated into English by Deirdre McMahon)

Nothing

I don’t feel
even
a breath
just blood-red
plastic flowing
from you
your voice
a whisper
of static
A
button switches
you off
as required
or
what remains
of you
even your
scream
remains
whisper-loud.

 

(deutsches Original „NICHT“, from Marco Sagurna: „MINIMAL – Gedichte“, © Pop Verlag 2019; translated into English by Deirdre McMahon)

Snake

of a queue
In morning sunshine
at Rossmann

That club-feeling as
the doorman
waves me in Your

eyes above your
mask WOW Your
gaze catches me as

I stand beside
the shaving foam
Above my mask
my glasses
steam up.

 

(„DIE SCHLANGE“, by © Marco Sagurna, from „Gedichte für alle Lebenslagen“, Reclam Verlag Stuttgart 2021; translated into English by Deirdre McMahon)

DEIRDRE McMAHON, grew up in Ireland. She studied English and German at University College Dublin. After many years as a primary teacher in Dublin, she completed a MA in literary translation at the University of Warwick, indulging her life-long love of languages and literature. She was ‘Highly Commended’ in the 2017 Stephen Spender Awards (poetry) and in the 2020 John Dryden Literary Translation Awards, the latter for an extract from Carolina Schutti’s Eulen fliegen lautlos / Owls fly soundlessly. She is particularly interested in children’s literature, poetry and in writers who write in a second or subsequent language.