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A LIBRARY IN WASHINGTON, D. C.*
(Sestina)

web | Black book of the Endangered Species

Walking down the aisle between the book-shelves,
he sees darkness ahead in the window
and himself walking under the white light:
white and absorbed in the darkness his face
moves in the large window in falling snow.
"Eleven," ticks softly the wall-eyed clock.

In the library the moon of the clock
shines at the other end of the long shelves.
He starts to read the white letters of snow
in the giant black page of the window,
projecting there his own sleepy face
as he walks under incandescent light.

And he passes by a red "EXIT" light
reflected there; the quiet white clock
is moving a hand on its eyeless face;
he picks up a book, the infinite shelves
continuing in the evening window,
by now full of silently falling snow.

Before him, letters, like negative snow,
fall on the page in the ghostly smooth light:
the evening is white in the page-window -
and he forgets the two swords of the clock
silently moving above the book-shelves.
Blind, persistent, like a clock, is his face.

There is cool and shining snow on his face--
that face is falling outside in the snow;
in the window the long row of book-shelves
is going on and on in chalky light,
and like a full moon the ghostly white clock
glitters afar in the evening window.

Everything falls down in the black window
where he discovers his pale ghostly face
under the circling slow swords of the clock
and the abundant letters of the snow.
In the dark window the red "EXIT" light
leads him away from the long row of shelves.

The books from the shelves are his dark windows:
his face is a moon of the books: the light
comes from his clock-face in the evening snow.

 


* The poem was the first poem the author ever wrote in English.

 

 

© Vladimir Levchev
=============================
© Електронно издателство LiterNet, 12.10.2004
Владимир Левчев. Черна книга на застрашените видове. / Black Book of the Endangered Species. Варна: LiterNet, 2004

Други публикации:
Владимир Левчев. Черна книга на застрашените видове. / Black Book of the Endangered Species. USA by Word Works <http://wordworksdc.com>, Washington, 1999.