We lost this
wonderful soul a
days ago, Enrique Servín the philosopher, poet, and
languages lover. He was master for many, so I give him tribute
by posting his poems as master poet in this issue. I am adding
my tribute at the end of the page, which talks about him.
Stop the car and look at that rainbow. It’s not often
you get a chance to see one like this one.
And the rainbow floats, high up, above
made up of light.
A bridge between this world
and this same world.
Letting us dream
that things like reconciliation, the heights
are indeed possible.
And people saw there ancient thresholds
and in the places whence it springs up
they saw the treasures of the earth.
But there is no treasure
other than this burning rainbow, the valleys
wet with rain
And from the sky
air, leaves, the gazing
of the ones standing here
renew. (They all renew.)
How tall become, then, our horizons
how little matters, then, the frailness of all things
Past end future. The nothingness we are.
Dark music: the desert air is turned into
all-distant waters. Invading.
And what we call eternity
Is cyphered in the lightning, and in an ¬¬–equally– remote and
April once again
It’ll be April soon, for one more year.
the sweetest rain
will just repeat themselves
as they have done it for so long.
Yourself: you will be going back
to your old ways.
So be prepared, on time, for the emergency.
And the emergency will be
to fall in love with someone once again
to build up, out of nothingness, tall trees
to pull up chants, out of sheer stones.
To be the fiercest fire, devouring
in the attempt.
6. F. Espejo cuyo tamaño permite ver a las personas de cuerpo
Diccionario de la Real Academia Española
Go and look at yourself in the moon, an old voice would tell me,
and “the moon”
was the golden ship of a mirror, very high in front of me, that
would come close
from that wall. Of iridescent edges and woods even much older
than the voice of that aunt that would always sway and smile to
The mirror left.
Men came to take it down and covering it with cardboard and
carried it from the living room. There was a long hallway in
So that moon left. Something definite.
Because the aunt had died before, and I no longer remember how.
Distant images of pieces of furniture departing. Some relative
a vase, a crystal ornament as a keepsake. Not more.
And now all of that is imprecise and hushed. Memory’s dust.
And the moon is now only that of the sky, forever.
Beyond my dreams and memories. Beyond the body that
is no longer a child’s.
The slow, alien, moon.
Coldly, it is only a change in the use of words. Language
also grows old; that is unimportant.
But language is alive, it plays, and there is no nostalgia
in the fortuitous metaphor by which the moon, that of the sky,
becomes once more a mirror:
Sea of Rains, Ocean of Storms, Sea of Tranquility
where up close
there is but dust and silence.
Aerial silver, the moon
of distant silence.
That slow moon of the sky, in the high afternoon.
I’m in another country, say the maps,
History, or some other detail:
Strange faces, laughter that laughs
with a foreign accent.
This place, it is true
could never be my city.
But if I stick a shovel in the earth
the earth, moist from winter
opens just as back there, and the worm
rolls about with no country,
because it loves life.
And flies, identical, also land
on garbage heaps.
And the reed bed, and the cold wind
speak a tongue that I can understand.
Translated by Robert Ransom
Lament of the crocodile who eats a mermaid
What a horrible taste. Especially the head.
Because waist down it was not disagreeable.
A soft white meat, a rather light and tasty flavor.
Not much difference
with those large golden fish
that I sometimes can catch before they reach the sea.
But the rest of the body, what a complete disaster.
How visceral and inconsistent. Indeed how bilious.
And must one speak about that heart of hers, so decomposed
or of its salty blood?
But the worst was the head, so strong and pungent.
Woe is me. How much bitterness and sorrow
I carry now in my gullet.
It must have been so tough enduring such a life, so much divided
between the tail divine, iridescent and mighty
and the oppressive head, that by its heavy load
tended to drag her to the chasm.
—And then the crocodile
let fall one of those tears that have made it so famous—.
My tribulated crocodile on various occasions has been accused of
misogyny, when in reality he is, of course, a misanthrope. All
things considered he could even pass for a feminist misanthrope,
given that he delegated the representation of the entire human
race—as the exclusive keeper of reason and the indisputable
inventor of technology and progress—to the person of one
Apart from this, and from a strictly literary point of view,
what could’ve been achieved with a word as masculine as it is
cacophonous as Triton? But come now, militants of the world:
crocodiles do not cry and mermaids do not exist.
Translated by Robert Ransom
I will not flee from you
fountain or chaos, veneer, or wind.
As long as precariously
equilibrium holds together this truth
made of humble woods
I will obey under the fires of dawn or of late afternoon
—happenings, dreams, desire—
the inscrutable voice of whatever you want me to be.
I surrender to the wind
in front of the light of this unfathomable landscape.
Translated by Lilvia Soto
As under the snow
when the atmosphere is filled with stars
of floating water, white and crystal-pure
the world hides much more beauty
than we will ever be able to understand.
But those stars
light out and dissolve
as soon as they touch our hands.
Translated by Lilvia Soto
My tribute to
I know, you can read this given line Enrique Alberto Servín
Herrera (Enrique Servín), (as you can read any language in this
“असतो मा सद्गमय तमसो मा ज्योतिर्गमय मृत्यो: मा अमृतं गमय”
I saw you first in China, at Beijing airport, I think, it was 7
.5.2016. First edition of Twin Rivers International Poetry Week
at Suiyang, Guizhou. We were among a few, who came via Beijing.
When I came out of Airport, I was much tired, when I came out
with the reception team, I found you near a bus, with a small
box in hand, You welcome me with a smile – oh, you came from
India, So nice to meet you.
I don’t know, how I reacted, but you started praising Indian
culture, philosophy, and spirituality.
I thought, you are one among many, who have the wrong idea about
spirituality, who came to Ghats and think that rituals are
spirituality, or poverty is religion,
I bluntly asked you, how much you know about Indian
You were not defeated, but said – I try to read Geeta, etc. I
want to read in original Sanskrit, and one day, I will learn
Now, I am a bit convinced, this man is not shallow, as he knows
that the translations are very different then original text.
But till now, I never meet an intellectual poet, except Dr.
Ayyappa Paniker, Most of the poets I meet in such festival are
butterfly, some are like Honey bee, who always drunkard in their
own words, and many are like flowers, just giving fragrance, but
You were among very sharp and intelligent.
Later we had a conversation about Hinduism, I talked about how
different stages of Indian philosophy from Richa to Upanishad to
Purana, you were listening to me with care. And it looks that you
are satisfied, you told me, "we may have more communication
about many things, What you said, was my observation also, but I
never got anyone, who talk in details. "
So our communication started towards a good friendship, We could
not find other poets in the hotel. In Beijing, it is difficult
to find someone, who can speaks in English, but to my surprise,
you could speak in of Chinese and find out that what is the
system for the dinner, and other plans regarding festival.
I asked you- Do you know Chinese? You replied- I learned many
languages, and Chinese is one among them, I was now impressed,
though it was your first visit to China. I was wondering, how
much this poet from Mexico knows about the world. Later I came
to know that you are a linguistic as well as philosphor,
For most of us, Mexico is a land of workers, migrants and hungry
people, who are rushing to America, We know about Mayan
Civilization, but very little,
When I asked about your country, You said- See India and Mexico
are almost same, we have the baggage of olden civilization,
ancient philosophy, but our present is confusing, we are poor,
because of mismanagement.
Later in our festival, You keep asking me about many things
which impressed me – like Kutiyattam, (not Kathakali like many
ask) You could sing a few lines of Subba Lakshmi. You could
recite many hymns in Sanskrit.
And at last day, like a child, you were happy after seeing
wonderful beauty of twin river," I am astonished and asking
myself, is it true that I am in so much beautiful part of the
Here I could see innocent purity in you.
I remember a child in you, when returning from Beijing, we
climbed on china wall, I was terribly tired and sad that I am
not enjoying like you all, but seeing you I felt that how proud
you felt walking on the wall. I learned a new face of you, when
you started talking to taxi driver in Chinese, and asking about
the Chinese Opera, the young driver was very intelligent, and
knew many lines of Opera. It was surprising to see you singing
the lines with the driver with almost same note, Oh God, what a
poet you are!
He not only knows about Chinese literature but knows how to sing
Opera, which is one of the most difficult singing .
I must say, you explained to me about Chinese ancient poets, I
was such an ignorant.
I learned from you that you are like an Amrit Pot, which is
eager to get more and more Amrit .You never show your
intellectual strengths to show off.
I am a kind of person, who never write back to poets, as most of
them do, as I don’t like to create poets lobby like many are
making. So I never communicate with you.
I got your message, just two months before kritya2017, in which
you wished to come to India, as it is his dream to see this
land. So you politely asked me, “if I can join kritya festival.“
I liked your work but was hesitating, as kritya cannot pay
travel expenses. So I wrote back to you -"if you can manage his
You agreed immediately as you had many flying points, which can
be convert into a ticket.
Thus you came to kritya festival in Trivandrum. Though I was
working hard, so i couldn’t communicate, moreover you were not a
kind of poet, who want attention. After the festival, we had a
big seminar, I had to invite a few poets to take part in it.
With my previous experience, I selected you, and later when I
read your paper, it was fantastic, that I wanted to use your
article in my upcoming book, with your permission.
You wrote to me that you want to have a kritya kind of festival
in your country, you want to invite Arundhati Roy as well, and
moreover, you wanted my poems, translated into Spanish.
I remembered that you told me that –Rati, your poems are very
different from your outer shape, they have deep philosophy, I
will translate them and make my people understand poetic
Your words were sufficient for me, but we again never
communicate much, as I never wanted to disturb your journey of
Yesterday Bas Kwakman send me a message about the saddest news
in this world, I was shocked, and not able to react.
The thief who hit on your head was the enemy of knowledge. He
not only steal your car but stolen light of knowledge from this
world. I was expecting more and more research and work from you
dear poet friend
I don’t have words,
I am sure, you will be learning many languages of Gods, by now.
They say that God calls dearest one, but I don’t like this.
Don’t keep quiet friend, make noise in heaven also, so we have a