The Silence Variations

The Silence Variations

They must have thought there was no one while
they could have found me here in the garden
smoking a cigar — enjoying some peace
and its taste of tobacco
and tube radios

They must have thought there was no one while
silence was fuming from the air vents
and the mildew in the cellar choking me
during my search for papers
old boots and petrol

The house’s emptiness was their host but
they could have found me here in the garden
in a cloudy day
sitting at the chessboard where we were fighting
the wars of nothing

I heard they were looking for me — well
they could have found me here in the garden
collecting resin and acrimony
in a liquid contact with nature
and the girl’s breathing

I certainly accepted the invitation of a dear person
who criticises platitudes and so here I am
smoking a cigar — enjoying some peace
while the city traffic noises
are being tamed by the double glazing

How not to swallow the month of November
in its charcoal tree-lined avenues and in a café
smoking a cigar — enjoying some peace
chatting about some future projects
empty beer mugs on the table

At 3:44 in the morning towards the end
of a Polish auteur film on the third channel
in the chloroformic silence of a kitchen full of smokers
and its taste of tobacco
the night stays out like a short documentary

Only the train’s aching joints
under the weight of the sardine-commuters
the only noises in a crowded calm
and its taste of tobacco
while the cold is dripping from the overcoats

I’ll show you the Memories Archive
wrinkled papers — some battered notebooks
remembrances mixed with rotten pictures
then become ideas for novels
and tube radios

A removal of file cabinets drawers
desks dressers beds table lamps
studded suitcases safe-conducts type–
writer coffeepot lonely stillness
and tube radios

(1994 | 2009)

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About Riccardo Mori

Writer. Translator. Mac consultant. Enthusiast photographer. • If you like what I write, please consider supporting my writing by purchasing my short stories, Minigrooves or by making a donation. Thank you!