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Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Poem: Communism (1958) by Franco Fortini

 

Franco Fortini  Communism (1958)

 

I was a communist throughout.

Justly though, the other communists

looked askance at me. I was a communist

despite their certainties, despite my doubts.

Justly they did not see themselves in me.

.

They would not admit my discipline.

My centralism seemed anarchy to them.

My self-criticisms contradicted theirs.

Special communists cannot be:

to think so is not to be so.

.

Justly they did not see themselves in me,

my comrades. Like them, I too

was enslaved. Even more so: I tended to forget it.

They did their work, I followed my inclination.

Exactly that: I was a communist throughout.

.

Despite their certainties, despite my doubts

I always wanted this world ended.

Myself ended too. And it was that exactly

which estranged us. My hopes had no point for them.

My centralism seemed anarchy to them.

.

As if I wanted more, more truth,

more for me to give them, more

for them to give me. Thus living, dying thus.

I was a communist throughout.

I always wanted this world ended.

.

I have survived enough to see

comrades who bruised me broken by intolerable truths.

Now tell me: you knew very well I was with you?

Was that why you hated me? My truth is truly needed,

breathed in through space and time, heard patiently.

--

Translated by Angelo Quattrocchi and Lucien Rey

 

 

http://newleftreview.org/?view=2159


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