In a book by a long-dead poet,
by the poem in which he fixes a woman
long-dead, is a flowerhead of mud
pressed flat; the foot-stamp of my cat.
Forever sniffing round, she was
transfixed by lurking-space between the pages,
and froze there, once, for the out-race of a mouse
(and now my cat, my pet, is long-gone, too).
And true enough, in the spine-dark deep
of the paper hidey-holes there’s something trapped:
we’re forever slipping this or that between the sheets
to keep a hold on all, our every accident.
Tranlated by Antony Dunn