We don't wake together. I come to
in an empty room by the sea long after
you've woken and opened the window
and showered and dressed and left.
Your day is a street which leads
to a road that reaches a building,
then leads to an avenue, lastly,
caught in the grid of the city.
My day is a corridor that runs
through my veins and is closed
neatly with copper buttons.
We make our own ways home.
You wear your purple dress
to match the colour of the clocks
and I slip on my patu.
A good time for green tea.
Meals bring each together,
as does the TV, the news, the computer.
I love you like the fire loves the stove.
You love me like the stove loves firewood.
Later on we clutch each other and dream our separate dreams.
The literal translation of this poem was made by Hamid Kabir
The final translated version of the poem is by Nick Laird
© Poetry Translation Centre 2004-2015