UNIVERSE

                                                   Bearing rolling almost nude inside me
                                                                Tiny animal of light
                                                        Tempest second after second

                                                                        Universe,
                                                      First, expanse of water over night
                                                            Echo coming from a shell
                                                           Which never says its name.
                                                                  Depths of spring.
                                                                  Silence of winter

                                                                        Universe,
                                                     One day I dressed myself with you,
                                                  Behind the “Black Man” dismantled.
                                                             Beauty in every sphere.
                                                             Kindness in every thing.
                                                      Vastness of serenity placed there
                                                                  On a single point.
                                                  Age and Youth forever joined together
                                                                beneath the waves.

                                                                        Universe,
                                          An air bubble, almost, on the surface of Elsewhere
                                                   Change and chaos, flux and stability
                                                                      Ridiculous.
                                                                    All is Nothing.
                                                       The centuries pass like sponges.
                                                                Fire feeds on water.
                                                 The earth is nothing but a branch of air.

                                                                        Universe,
                                                    No need to talk to you (about it all).
                                                    You are the door behind each word,
                                                         The imperceptible boundary,
                                                             The flight of a butterfly.
 

                                                                        Universe,
                                                                   In a hand-shake
                                                         When the lasting pain arrives
                                                       Of no longer knowing anything.
                                        When the last beloved has vanished in your furrows.
                                             When solitude tears off the blue from images.
                                              Universe unthinkable and yet perceived as a
                                                             Trap-door in the future.
                                                         Half-way between any traces.
                                                                  Behind the noise.
                                                              At momentum’s heart.

                                                                        Universe,
                                                        “like unto” a child who dances
                                                          to the sound of pipes of Pan.

                                                                        Universe,
                                                                      Confidence
                                                              In what happens to us.
                                                       I am you at the level of the day.
                                                         So many shadows pirouetting
                                                              in the space of a vision.
                                                        I set off in search of adventure
                                                            With, by way of oranges,
                                                     The word “love” and the Invisible.

                                                  René Barbier

CRISE
                                                              Alternative translation by
                                                                      Joseph Brenner
                                                               Les Diablerets, Switzerland
                                                                     November 5, 2001