Deux Poèmes de Supervielle

In the preface to my Trois Poèmes de Supervielle, recently published by Symétrie, I describe his poetry as ‘familiar, peaceful and reassuring’, deeming it ‘faithful to all stages of our life’. But I did not specify the stuff or the contour of this experience. Every poet creates a universe to which we are invited: to how many is it open to us to adhere, to join to the point of no longer feeling the stitch? For this one, there is no doubt. The trees, rivers, animals that inhabit it – and envelop it with naive tenderness – can become so many unknown friends, not by magic but by intimate sympathy. ‘Unto you a fish is born…’, ‘Unto you a bird is born…’ ‘Unto you a star is born…’ And similarly, these flamingos of dawn and dusk, this pine floating on a lake: to encounter them, it suffices, according to the words and rhymes, to not only perceive them but recognize them, in the most acute memory. ‘Familiar’, assuredly, like the longest-lasting of our dreams. Supervielle put it more nicely, saying ‘my legends’.

Guy Sacre
(translation: John Tyler Tuttle)


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