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Zita Izso: a poem

Photograph by Laura Veres


It's still dark.

The first sunrise after Creation

could've been

similar to the lights

in the corridor of an empty museum

before the guard opens the doors.

I'm opening my eyes.

The first thing I see is you.

I wonder how long it will take

for me to tell you apart

from the other recently formed things,

to know you haven't grown

out of the moss carpet

you're standing on,

you're not the fruit fallen from the tree,

not animated by the wind.

I would have to gaze at you a long time.

What we can see in the sky

is not the sun, not yet,

it's just a freshly kneaded planet.

It illuminates things for a little while

until we believe they exist.

Translated by Agnes Marton.

Zita Izso is the recipient of numerous awards and grants, including the Zsigmond Móricz Literary Grant, the Mihály Babits Literary Translator Grant and the NKA Arts Grant. She published her third poetry collection in 2018 under the title Éjszakai földet érés (Nighttime Landing).

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