June 20, 2010

Carlos Ávila

Carlos Ávila [Brazil]
1955

Born in Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais in 1955, Carlos Ávila is a poet and journalist. He edited and participated in several avant-garde journals. He is the son of the noted Brazilian poets Afonso Ávila and Laís Correa do Araujo, both linked to the concretism movement of Brazil.

Ávila’s poetry publications include the books Acqui & Agora (1981) Sinal de Menos (1989), Asperos (1990) and Bissexto Sentido of 1999. He continues also to publish essays in journals and newspapers in Brazil and abroad. From 1995-1999 Ávila edited the Suplemmento Literário de Minas Gerais, a monthly newspaper of poetry.

BOOKS OF POETRY

Acqui & Agora (1981); Sinal de Menos (1989); Asperos (1990); Bissexto Sentido (São Paulo: Editora Perspectiva, 1999



Baudelaire Answer

The sun
(awaiting an adjective;
im-pla-ca-ble)
bleached the cover
of a volume of baudelaire

the flowers of evil
(I discover)
cannot resist the sun's
slow violence
(sun of the backlands' mouth
That blasts the land dry?)

Besides,
who had
the shelf
put there:
what would baudelaire
(in graphic effigy)
be doing in the backlands?

if the flowers of evil
can't stand the sun
(answers baudelaire)
How could they resist the thrusts
Of salt and rust?

Translated from the Portuguese by Regina Alfarano

(previously unpublished)



Narcissus Poeticus

dried up

(in a waterless
vase)

ill planted
in a (tiny)
waste land
of the dim apartment:
how to resist
dust dirt pollution?

mistreated ex-narcissus
abandoned to its fate
(flat on the floor)
without well
or mirror

dried up
(alone in the vase)
without sweat or saliva
or tears
to save it

died
(soot
on its soul)

Translated from the Portuguese by Regina Alfarano

(previously unpublished)

_____
Poems copyright ©2003 by Carlos Ávila. English language translation copyright ©2003 by Regina Alfarano.

Reprinted from The PIP Anthology of World Poetry of the 20th Century, Volume 3: Nothing the Sun Could Not Explain—20 Contemporary Brazilian Poets (Los Angeles: Green Integer, 2003).

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