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You Went to Sicily

by György Faludy

translated from the Hungarian by Paul Sohar

You went to Sicily. I shut all the shutters,
all the windows, and the gate.
I serve you up on our table, nude,
wrap your hips in a sonnet, and wait.

You slip in and out of the mirror glass;
if I look at you, you go up in blue mist.
I can’t sleep. Neither can you, I hope.
But every part of me celebrates our tryst.

I’ve become a projector and I must begin
screening our love story on a wide white wall.
I’m a clamshell and I lock you in.

Taormina’s sunset glow begins to fail.
Cast your stretching shadow toward me:
between us nothing but a thin, airy veil.

(Malta, 1966)


György Faludy (1910–2006) was born and died in Budapest, Hungary, but spent much of his long life in exile all over the world. He did not seek out his adventures, but when they found him he recorded them in his poetry, social commentary, and philosophical musings.

Paul Sohar came as a teenage refugee from Hungary to the United States, where he studied philosophy and worked in a chemistry lab. His work has appeared in publications such as Chelsea, The Kenyon Review, and Rattle, and in Homing Poems, a collection of his poetry (Iniquity Press, 2005). His volume of Faludy translations is looking for a publisher. (5/2009)

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