PEWNO PERFECT
Wisawa Szymborska - (Polish) trans. Adam Czerniawski
- "Wic jeste pewien, e nasz okrt przybi
do pusty czeskich? - Jestem pewien, panie."
To jest z Szekspira, który, jestem pewna,
nie by kim innym. Kilka faktów, data,
portret omal za ycia ... Twierdzi, e to mao?
Czeka na dowód, który Wielkie ju Morze porwao
i rzucio na czeskie brzegi tego wiata?
- Thou art perfect, then, our ship hath touch'd upon
The deserts of Bohemia? Aye, my lord.

That's from Shakespeare, who, I'm perfect,
was not someone else. Some facts,a date,
a portrait near contemporary ... Not enough? Should one await
the proof already snatched up by the Great Sea and hurled
upon Bohemian beaches of this world?

NOTE: We have not found it practicable to use italics in the Polish text, and we hope that their use in the English will show what the poet intended.

Copyright © Wislawa Szymborska; Trans. Copyright © Adam Czerniawski 1990 - publ. Forest Books


next
index
translator's next