Lines, by Łukasz Jarosz

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By Lukasz Jarosz, from The Nature of Things, a collection of his poems that will be published this month by Liberodiscrivere. Jarosz is the author of several books of poems, including Pelna krew (Full Blood), which won the Wislawa Szymborska Award in 2012. Translated from the Polish by Antonia Lloyd-Jones.

Yes, I used to think in pictures. But I wanted
the picture to say more — a woman at the window
behind her lace curtains, a pensive man watching
the piglets feasting on last year’s apples by the sty.
Kalina drawing a heart that has its eyes tight shut,
wiping her cheek clean of my kiss.

I used to think in pictures; I’d see the doctor running
from the patient and someone sending for the priest. The eyes of the snake
that’s been stretched across my shoulders to have our photo taken.
The boy who’s hidden in a man, the woman concealed
in a mother: a young couple and their grubby, sated child
daily devouring their time, their money, and their sex.

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