Wednesday, September 5, 2012

The Easiest Demise

Written by my father, Zeev Kachel

Translated by me

Oh Wind, where will you carry me
Toward what fate, what shore, what bay?
Will I be dropped to an open sea
Or else become an eagle’s prey?

For what is death? I can’t tell
How beastly, really, might it be?
They say that Death will never fell
A young-old person such as me.

And so, who knows? I have no answer
No need to trust all those deceits,
Lift me slowly, oh Wind, oh mother
Or I’ll take cover under sheets

Perhaps it’s better to seek protection
Across the ocean, in a distant town?
I have a passport, a profession
Can apply some makeup like a clown

On the other hand, to live forever
Is not so good and not preferred,
And it’s not written in any charter
What in my life still lies ahead

All my acquaintances have long expired
For me, I think, it is a sin,
To be the last one is undesired
I do not wish to lose my kin

So if to die, then with no haggling
I choose the easiest demise,
A prayer, “God is full of pity”
A headstone for a modest price

With a rotating slab of granite!
A splendid cantor, a deep voice too,
The two trees, I say, cut down, just cut
And let them not obscure my view.

Here’s how I wish to be interred:
No eulogy at the graveside plot,                       
Not nude; but with a flag, thus covered
And never mind the proper spot

Across a stunning slab of granite
My name inscribed in golden letters
As is my poem, and my portrait
A funeral procession during stormy hours
The largest crowd with scores of cars
Pretty women sob in abundant grief
Wiping their nose with a handkerchief.

Obituaries in the newspaper
Some large, some small, both bold and dainty,
And that is all. And with no torture.
For now just bring me a cup of tea.

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  1. I am spellbound. Poetry thou art so humane, all the rest seem so profane.

    1. Thank you so much Venkatesh Kumar, so glad it touched you!