Prelude – Tomas Transtromer

Waking up is a parachute jump from dreams.
Free of the suffocating turbulence the traveler
sinks toward the green zone of morning.
Things flare up. From the viewpoint of the quivering lark
he is aware of the huge root systems of the trees,
their swaying underground lamps. But aboveground
there’s greenery—a tropical flood of it—with
lifted arms, listening
to the beat of an invisible pump. And he
sinks toward summer, is lowered
in its dazzling crater, down
through shafts of green damp ages
trembling under the sun’s turbine. Then it’s checked,
this straight-down journey through the moment, and the wings spread
to the osprey’s repose above rushing waters.
The Bronze Age trumpet’s
outlawed note
hovers above the bottomless depths.

In day’s first hours consciousness can grasp the world
as the hand grips a sun-warmed stone.
The traveler is standing under the tree. After
the crash through death’s turbulence, shall
a great light unfold above his head?

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