HOW CAN RELIANCE LIVE?

Around us all collapses,
and more will collapse yet,
until no stone is left
to support our foot.
How can you still believe,
who have nothing to believe in?
How can reliance live
so lacking any root?
Is it itself a root?
Is it itself the seed?
and does the tree of the world itself
grow out of it, then?
Then our fate is stored
with taciturn hearts.
Because of their silence
it may be day again.
Because of their wholeness
chaos may flower
from miracles' power - that says nothing
but wants to be believed.
All things may be smashed asunder.
Again they may be healed,
as long as it is living,
our innermost seed.
Come, all that grows whole,
transparently self-evident,
to us, we who reckon
and are on watch each hour,
and learn that the day
we cease to reckon,
that is our lives' fulfilment
and our future power!
 

Translated into English by David McDuff in "Karin Boye: Complete poems".

Swedish original



Copyright © 2005:
Translation from Swedish into English: David McDuff

Published with the permission of:
David McDuff, translation.
May and Hans Mehlin, Layout.

For more information, please visit the website of David McDuff and his own pages with the translations.