Poems

the mula

measure the worth of her effort (1) 
and affirmations by having
as measure the weight she carries
like a good mule she has no idea
who is riding her but
she is at their service
 
like every good mule
she packs by the edge of
the cliff not dying
is her vengeance
tongueless philomela (2)
and mule
does not jump for hatred
nor for hope
(and in it there is a fundamental
difference).
 
mule-lavínia
also had her tongue
pulled out from lucrécia
mule and sleeping
they didn’t pull anything
out but blackmail
is also a gag
mule-talia also
slept when she was
raped
 
it was maury and mule
who managed to
open their mouth
and by turning into an ass
changed his own
name and of things
the new mule learned
german and vergewaltigung
ceases to be what it is
becomes some sound
said with the same
intonation that comet
fury alligator bird
match procession stone
cactus
 
the packed mule
almost mute at least
never has been deaf
‘i can even hear the stones and their misfortune.’ (3)     
each one has what says
the mule in zarathustra
hilst’s mule
but the nightingale who sings
is the male nightingale.
 
(1) Nouns are gendered in Portuguese and mule is a feminine noun. I think we should keep it that way.
 
(2) ‘Filomela’ is one meaning for ‘rouxinol’(‘nighthingale’), but it also implies a reference to the rape of Philomela. Philomela was an Athenian princess, sister to Procne who was married to Tereus, king of Thrace. Tereus cut off Philomela’s tongue and raped her. Afterwards, Philomela transformed into a nightingale and sang. Also, female nightingales are mute.
 
(3) This is a line from a poem by Hilda Hilst, ‘Mula de Deus’/’God’s Mule’

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