In Pain (Kivussa), Saima Harmaja

lingua fennica


Wracked with TB, the 21 year old Harmaja knows that her only liberation lies in the embrace of her pain. A poem for Holy Saturday, if ever there was one.

Oh, heaven’s hand, thy sword has deeply pressed.
All through the night the goad has chewed my chest.
But don’t remove blade yet from its incision;
press deep once more, and so that thy precision
might now awaken mutest breasted deep,
causing eternal wave from stone to leap.


Oi taivaan käsi, syvään miekkas löi.
Öin pitkin tutkain poveani söi.
Mut älä vielä nosta pois sen terää;
lyö kerran viimeisen, niin että herää
poveni mykin syvyys puhkaiseten
kivestään aallon iankaikkisen.

Translation by Rupert Moreton

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