Kovič Kajetan:
Elderberry Hours

This is the old elderberry behind the house. These,

the elderberry hours.

The terrifyingly green tightness of the leaves.

The blackish tint of the berries.

The bitter elderberry time before the storm.

Below the wall, the blossoms of the nettle.

The grass unmown.

Behind the wall, a room.

The stale smell of bachelor uncles.

The hollow elderberry stalk of Sunday.

The after-dinner quiet.

The reddish stems of the berries.

Their flat, insipid taste

in elderberry sleep.

Sweet spittle ripens

in the sluggish mouth of boys

leaning on the elderberry flanks of houses.

Translated by The Author