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<TN>Mullenneaux, Lisa</TN>

 Old-baby, pepper and vanilla,
it's hard to say where you are,
you who mistrusts places and even names,
barely accept
that your name is Caproni.
You are where
afloat one sees nothing
but the wale:' makes bubbles,
it's your whirlpool of rhymes
that rise from nowhere: just pop up.
Or you're by the board of departures and arrivals
when the trains are unmoving
in the station at dead of night
and those alive have given up.
Or you're in church, on a weekday morning,
alone, spying on saints
at an altar you don't believe in,
or Sunday night at a tavern
among hunters, like a roe deer
disguised as a human.
But what you see meanwhile
a mouse, a flower, wine,
the lost way and a beastly life:
o cruel magic
for the fresh trembling of your heart.
You've had it with poetry with prose with history:
history is chilling, you said, and conflict
isn't your strength. Your aim was you.
How well I know it.
And victory?
Only this passion
to sing, to tell, and to disappear.

Translations from the ItalianBy Lisa Mullenneaux

A lifelong Milanese, Anna Maria Carpi ( has won awards for her translations of twentieth-century German poets and also for her own poetry, which she began publishing in 1993. In 2016 Marcos y Marcos published her collected poems as E io che intanto parlo. Besides poetry, she has written essays, stories, and four novels.

Lisa Mullenneaux is the author of Naples' Little Women: The Fiction of Elena Ferrante and has reviewed Ferrante's La Frantumaglia for WLT (Jan. 2016). She teaches writing for the University of Maryland UC.

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Title Annotation:Three Poems
Author:Carpi, Anna Maria
Publication:World Literature Today
Article Type:Poem
Date:Jan 1, 2018
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