By Flávia Rocha

Translated by Idra Novey and Flávia Rocha

from Issue 20: Landmarks



the little dark
eyes, calking
the idea
of guilt: there
is something
pathetic in
someone else’s
dreams, exists
like the reflex
of departure.


The ground
lacks memory:
comes tonight
has a strange,
sensual body:
its hand reaches
for her face
without guidance
without truth.


The smell
of sea:
a decade later
no indent
on the mattress,
on the wood
that sustains
the bed:
he will say he
loves her
never loved her
loves her.

Flávia Rocha is a Brazilian poet, editor, and journalist. She holds an MFA in writing from Columbia University, and is the author of two poetry books, both published in Brazil, the bilingual A Casa Azul ao Meio-dia/ The Blue House Around Noon (Travessa dos Editores, 2005) and Quartos Habitáveis (Confraria do Vento, 2011). She is the editor-in-chief of Rattapallax, a literary journal based out of New York City featuring contemporary American and International poetry. Her translations from English into Portuguese of contemporary poetry often appear in literary magazines in Brazil. She currently lives in Portland, OR, with her husband and two young daughters.

Idra Novey is the author of Exit, Civilian, a 2011 National Poetry Series Selection, and The Next Country, a finalist for the Foreword Book of the Year Award in poetry. She’s received awards from the Poetry Society of America, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the PEN Translation Fund. Her translations include several collections of Brazilian poetry and Viscount Lazcano Tegui’s novel On Elegance While Sleeping, shortlisted for the 2010 Best Translated Book Award. Her most recent translation is Clarice Lispector’s novel The Passion According to G.H., recently published by New Directions and forthcoming from Penguin UK.

Flávia Rocha, Quartos Habitáveis. Rio de Janeiro: Confraria do Vento, 2011.

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