Cigarette smoke the gray clouds
	spreading in the lungs 
of space, the living stars,
	the far-off drops of joy, 
the hair of palm trees, 
     and on the planet’s 
surface, en route 
  from one country 
    to another, in the air, 
in the stratosphere
    of the sky the wind 
       of thought, it dances 
in the brushes of the courtyard, 
shakes the limp sheet 
         on the line,
as a man awakens 
     to life, some future 
you can’t quite 
     put your finger on,
  it hides in the darkness, 
        in the night,
 and he stared into the stars 
      of the black space,
the sleep changed 
      into serious words,
far away the dogs, 
    beyond sleep, wake,
wise sentences, the sentinel 
    of the unknown,
Ulysses’ old mongrel, 
   I will never return home, 
I am condemned on the road, 
     a jew, my eyes like stars 
  shining, I have murdered
	the albatross, I cannot 
    come back again, I am 
         flying, I am gliding
 and the time slows down, 
     the joy of the stars
penetrates the thick 
         mass of clouds,
     it starts to rain, the sound 
          of raindrops
 on wooden window 
      sill, the night nearly
worn through, the first 
of the house woken 
      up unperceived,
I am still sitting 
      on the wooden bench
in the backyard, 
     listening to a toilet 
    hushing, a shower 
       being turned on,
 the whole planet 
    on the threshold of day,
the wet sheet on the line, 
   an actor’s cape, 
        this play is over, 
    the encores called,
  the life starting.

Markus Jääskeläinen



stays awake
by the light of the candle
in the darkness
listening for the thunder
of her own heart
at the silent night of
a dead city
when the morning
is absent
and the day
has ceased to exist
all through the night
she weeps
like a woman that
Jesus has loved
and as the morning
finally breaks
and the sabbath day is over
she runs to the grave
before all others;
like a knife
that slashes her heart
she remembers


I start out from
the middle of the world,
embracing it but saying goodbyes too
it’s spring and winter coming on,
I climb on a high mountain
arrive at a place where
I see a little bit of sky
a piece of the moon
and the sun
the green canopy of valley trees
under my feet small pebbles
smooth breast of rock
I lie down on
I do not intend to fall
asleep but sleep nevertheless
my eyes are opened
I know I will return
I have arrived

Freedom or Death

Perhaps not the best translation but here we go. It’s the first one and suggestions are welcome…

On the morning’s platform
in a photograph
the girl of flowery eyes
the first snow flake
of winter, the second
world war
she sleeps as we run
across the garden
and out the gate
all former things forsaken
abandoned rooms
the wine glasses of red lips
the imprints of conqueror’s
boot marks trampled in the thick
carpet of the salon
time broken to slivers
all former things forsaken
the whole life
the soft metal of the pointers
bent unrecognizable
we stand on the morning’s platform
girl and man
still waiting for the one train
on the way to freedom
or death