Summer Evening by the Window with Psalms

Read this beautifully crafted poem by a great poet of our world, Yehuda Amichai. I got introduced to his melancholic poetry of truth and metaphors about five years ago. A poet and his poetry transcend man made artificial national boundaries. Poetry is indeed universal.

Here is the link to New Yorker where this recently translated poem was published: Link

Summer Evening by the Window with Psalms

By Yehuda Amichai

Close scrutiny of the past.

How my soul yearns within me like those souls

in the nineteenth century before the great wars,

like curtains that want to pull free

of the open window and fly.

We console ourselves with short breaths,

as, after running, we always recover.

We want to reach death hale and hearty,

like a murderer sentenced to death,

wounded when he was caught,

whose judges want him to heal before

he’s brought to the gallows.

I think, how many still waters

can yield a single night of stillness

and how many green pastures, wide as deserts,

can yield the quiet of a single hour

and how many valleys of the shadow of death do we need

to be a compassionate shade in the unrelenting sun.

I look out the window: a hundred and fifty

psalms pass through the twilight,

a hundred and fifty psalms, great and small.

What a grand and glorious and transient fleet!

I say: the window is God

And the door is his prophet.

(Translated, from the Hebrew, by Robert Alter.)