Even more so than the famous mustard seed
small, our life.
We unite it with those
of Hercules and the Centaur
those of the cathedrals, the sequoias,
even of this anonymous tree, its trunk zebra-striped
by the shadows of the leaves,
even of the grass.
And so existence becomes walkable
somewhat, treading lightly.
Marie-Claire Bancquart has published over twenty collections of poetry, including Projets alternés, Mémoire d’abolie, Partition, and Opportunité des oiseaux. She has received the Grand Prix de critique de l’Académie française, Grand prix de l’Association internationale des critiques, and prix Sainte-Beuve de la critique, among others.
Wendeline A. Hardenberg received a dual MA/MLS and a Certificate of Literary Translation from Indiana University Bloomington. She currently serves as the instruction coordinator for Buley Library at Southern Connecticut State University. Her translations of Marie-Claire Bancquart’s poetry have appeared in Ezra: An Online Journal of Literary Translation, Ozone Park Journal, Qarrtsiluni Online Literary Magazine, and The Dirty Goat.
Original Text: Marie-Claire Bancquart, Avec la mort, quartier d'orange entre les dents. Paris: Obsidiane, 2005.