Four small poems

Edith Södergran: The Shadow of the Future


How can one chest contain all this ecstasy?

- it is the only question in my philosophy.

And my only answer: because, because I know.

What do I know?

That I shall live in awe of the sun

and not die and not win,

a sun which cannot stand its own rising.



My crown is too heavy for my strength.

See, I lift it with ease,

but my dust will crumble.

My dust, my dust, splendidly you are joined.

My dust, I think you’re beginning to long for a coffin.

Now it is not the electrical hour,

my dust, you don’t hear me.



I am triumphant like life itself.

Does my hand not bring happiness?

Strange time, you raise heroic children with untouched locks

in heights which hands never reach

and again my heart stands over deep ravines in triumph.

My heart, how careless you are,

like flint to play with!



It rains, it rains on me in heavy streams.

- - - - - - - -

For so little I won’t yet crush my heart.

Might difficulty blow like cold winds around me.

I am prosperity itself. On my brow it is written:

the sun cannot cry even for a second.

The one who wants to kill the sun must abandon his weapon,

he sees which is strongest.