what sings...

Adam Zagajewski

Where the Breath Is

She stands alone onstage
and has no instrument.

She lays her palms upon her breast,
where the breath is born
and where it dies.

The palms do not sing,
nor does the breast.

What sings is what stays silent.

                Trans. Clare Cavanagh


A poem that echoes, in its own way, Ingmar Bergman’s view of the artist in Persona.


Collin said...

Now I want to go watch Persona again. Haven't seen it a year or so now.

sam of the ten thousand things said...

That's my favorite film - period. I can never escape it, and I guess that's the reason for its place in my head. Thanks for the visit, Collin.

anhaga said...

Silence is so important for Bergman. Persona, yes. The Silence, obviously, but even more so in Winter Light. I think I started out years ago with Bergman as the director most important to me, and he only becomes more important the older I become. As you say of your own experience, he is always with me, because everything else leads back to Bergman (perhaps the representative artist of the late 20th century; I think the argument could be made....).

The Zagajewski is wonderful. Thanks for posting it.

sam of the ten thousand things said...

Have you seen Through a Glass Darkly, James? That fits as well. You're right about silence in connection with Bergman. I think it is the defining feature in his films. Thanks for the visit.

Anonymous said...

I have such a crush on A.Z. Thanks for posting this.