Latvian Feature

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Ronalds Briedis

Ronalds Briedis


Like the one before the world was created

Fog slides over the river
Tangles in bushes on shore

Dew trembles on a branch
A bud bursts open
A fledgling moves in a nest

Like the one before the first word was spoken

Church bells lick their lips


Before addressing the people
The prophet on return from the desert
Bends over the well
To quench his thirst
But freezes
When he sees his reflection —

His open mouth a zero

Translated by Margita Gailitis, with J. C. Todd