What remains to me of you

What remains to me of you


what’s left

appalling dreadful love

fleeting dignity

fertile dawn in my writing

(damaged diadem, I shine encrusted in your splendors)

what remains to me of you but these few

crazy verses of tongue and strum.

What but to annul the orifices

the segregation of silence

to idolize the determination

the overdetermination


to smear your contingency with interminable ceremonies

to love you, that is.

The tacit roaring still echoes between us

to love each other, did I say?

The problem is punctuation.

In quotation marks

I have you in quotation marks

or sometimes in parentheses I have you

faithful frenzy.

What remains to me but

the machinations of a transpiration:

the voracity of a song’s burden perverts presages

disparages the sound’s august surfaces


the jingle falls through the declension of onomatopoeia

the obvious eats at the intricacies of the word,


The noises of a siesta

are like a siesta.

The word “indebted” was

one through crystallized

a song that murmured at my shoulders

it set my actions to music.

It never had sung, you’d say, it was the tone

in which my mother would name me

it never finished singing

it only would sing.

The father would cross women indexes with his annulling eye

it was the indicative mode for a maternal imperfect preterite.


everything occurs while

(you never say while)

your brother would read Pound at the top of his lungs

out in any night weather

and you would translate Cervantes, just in case.

His hand on yours

his book on your book and the poem

sowing itself here below.

I am holding onto the arches, the retching

we have passed through knowing that we would not reach

the golden anniversary

and this arch or retch prior to all devolution or vomit

and the totalling of our encounter

the buckings, the accountings

the points of view

the points of divergence

dot, dot, dot

“Why aren’t we worrying about the dew?”

We won’t go to Verona or Elba

but still there remains to me,

what remains to me of you but these few

splendors soldering themselves in the conceit of a writing.

The underlining is mine.

What remains to me of you: the loved metonymy of the past.

Texts are foreign.

I have you on the tip of my Tongue.

Susana Cerdá (1948-2010) was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. Her poetry collection _Solia_ was published in 1988. Among other journal publications, she appeared frequently in the Argentine poetry journal _Xul_, edited by Jorge Santiago Perednik. Her work has also appeared in translation in English language journals and in the anthology _The Xul Reader_ (Roof Books).

Molly Weigel is a poet, translator, and therapist living in central New Jersey. Her version of Jorge Santiago Perednik’s Shock of the Lenders (Action Books) received the PEN Poetry in Translation Prize in 2013.

Artwork is from Leif Holmstrand’s “Holy Helpers”