On The Sixth Floor (Mažvydas Library)

Poem By Laurynas Katkus

An elevator, murmuring quietly,
Lifts us into a sky of books.
Eyes closed, you twist your hair around your finger:
Slumber is a soft and warm cocoon.
It will tear, when you step into the labyrinth of shelves.
When you hang your I.D. around your neck.

In the nearby prison's yellow cages, they read the script
Another way, with the whole body. On Iron Wolf Street
The cars race, competing toward success.
Here only twilight, hours on end, twilight…
At lunch you'll drink juice from a wine glass.
The pungence sticking to the corner of your lips.

You'll wander down the aisles, not even searching
For the beginning or end of the letters.
As if saying goodbye, you'll touch the spines of the books.
For you know, how one waits for a sign. Just a stirring.
How on understanding, everything shines.
How the shelves are endless.

The door opens onto the dim corridor.
But my electricity
Has grazed your hair.
Not moving, not paying any attention,
You stand and drink your image,
Which duplicates itself in the elevator's mirrors.

Translated by Kerry Shawn Keys

Comments about On The Sixth Floor (Mažvydas Library)

There is no comment submitted by members.

3,5 out of 5
1 total ratings

Other poems of KATKUS

And so I live

And so I live with cobwebs and ficuses,
dictionaries, comic strips, and a heart
which taps at the outskirts of night

Bread 1972

It smells of gas and ferment.
Obliquely across the pavement,
Vans: oblique letters,
red teats on the underbelly.

Once again I pace

Ich war alt wie ein Rauch
Johannes Bobrowski

once again I pace around the photos on the piano


Yo! Wind tore off the door.
Ah, a car, in snow.

Blue evening light,
beginning of Winter.

City Of Mercury

The road happened to be boggy.
Cars drove by, splashing mud and light.
Below us loomed the blue city of mercury.
Tin and water rusted in its twilight.