Gabriel Rosenstock is a poet and haikuist, author/translator of more than 150 books, mostly in Irish (Gaelic). Recent titles in English published in 2009 include a volume of poems from Salmon Poetry, Uttering Her Name, devotional poems to a muse-goddess which the author describes as ‘ecstatic utterances in a neo-bhakti style’ and two contemplative books on haiku as a way of life from Cambridge Scholars Publishing, UK, Haiku Enlightenment and Haiku the Gentle Art of Disappearing.
Haiku written in Catalonia
Illustrated by haiga artist Ion Codrescu from Romania
Squid: photo of an embryo
A five day old embryo.
You appear to be whole
But you have not yet arrived into this world.
You seem to be staring at me
And are about to say something
Not on your own behalf but on behalf of all embryos:
A secret you will never share with me.
I see you as a colour, a blob, a shape.
That’s all. What do you see?
Was there a flash from the camera that startled you,
Or terrified you?
Do you know what pain is? Pleasure?
Do you hear anything?
Anything at all? A squeak?
You have three hearts. Three hearts. How can you stand it?
Five day old embryo
I feel you are much older than me
And that you and your likes will be around
Yourself and your ink
In the swell
When we are long gone –
The one-hearted species.
Máthair shúigh: grianghraf de ghin
Gin cúig lá d’aois.
Féachann tú iomlán
Ach níl tú tagtha fós ar an saol.
An chuma ort gur ag stánadh orm atá tú
Is tú ar tí rud éigin a rá
Ní ar do shon féin ach ar son gach sutha:
Rún nach roinnfear liom go brách.
Mar dhath, mar mheall, mar chruth a fheicimse thú.
Sin uile. Cad is léir duitse?
An raibh scal ón gceamara ann a bhain preab asat,
A chuir sceimhle ionat?
An eol duit cad is pian ann? Pléisiúr?
An gcloiseann tú aon ní?
Rud ar bith? Gíocs?
Trí chroí atá ionat. Trí chroí. Conas a sheasann tú é!
Gin cúig lá d’aois.
Braithim gur sine i bhfad thú ná mé
Is go mbeidh tusa is do leithéid fós thart
Tú féin is do dhúch
Is sinne glanta go deo den phláinéad,
For other contributions by Gabriel Rosenstock, please follow the links below:
Poetry in this post: © Gabriel Rosenstock
(Original in Irish, translation to English by author)
Published with the permission of Gabriel Rosenstock