Lighthouse Keeper

Lighthouse Keeper

I get up in the morning and the world looks like Heathrow, Orly, or O’Hare.
On the left a jackdaw full of secrets, at the bottom two sparrows, just like that,
swifts everywhere, in flocks, like the fanatical guards
of some unyielding character. An airport named after Lech Wałęsa,
Ławica, or Okęcie. A pigeon with a filled goiter,
limping, innocent. A starling with a yellow load in its beak, a smuggler,
with its mimicking knack for languages. Tempelhof, Schönefeld,
Leipzig/Halle. The sun reflects off the white basketball backboards
and returns to the game of being, I was never good at that,
but times are changing. If I were a flight controller,
I’d walk around in a white shirt and give the sense of security
to the young women at the bar, after hours, of course,
which also fly by, casting a short shadow on the bays
of coffee from the duty-free shop. I’d stand in front of a panoramic
window and think about how little today depends on the talent and passion
of a single man. A lighthouse keeper, unfortunately,
but with views of the future.
A request for overtime
lies in the bottom drawer, under our vacation photo.
Rejected for now, but duly noted, I think, that I’m ready.
Translated by Piotr Florczyk and Bori Dralyuk

Dariusz Sośnicki

poet, editor, essayist, and translator

Dariusz Sośnicki, born in 1969 in Kalisz, poet, editor, (occasional essayist, and translator). Studied philosophy at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznań. Published several volumes of his own poetry, and a translation of a collection of W.H. Auden’s poems, W podziękowaniu za siedlisko [In Gratitude for the Habitat] (2013). His poems and essays on literaturę have been published in many journals and anthologies, including translation into other languages. Separate collections of his poetry have been published in Romania and the United States. He was the editor of the artzine Już jest jutro [It’s Already Tomorrow] (1990-1994), the literary biweekly Nowy Nurt [New Trend] (1994-1996, as well as heading the department of Polish prose in the Wydawnictwo W.A.B. publishing house (2005-2013). He lives in Poznań. The latest Sośnicki publication is his volume of poetry Spóźniony owoc radiofonizacji [The Late Fruit of the Radio] (2014).

Pic. Maciej Kaczyński