Class Struggle – Nuno Júdice

 translated by paulo da costa
Not everyone who built the cathedrals witnessed
the same. Some, by sunlight, erected towers and pinnacles
and attained heaven, others, inside crypts,
painted hells by candlelight, leaving room on the ground
for the most anonymous of the dead. Those
who reached the top, received the divine gaze and
witnessed the triumph of spring dawn, those
who stayed at the bottom, extracting the hallucinated
gestures of demons from damp walls, exchanged
obscenities and disease. And yet, the cathedral
is unique, and those who visit, appreciating the entirety that, they say,
was born of a perfect vision, do not think
in details. Who cares about the people who laboured
in the shadow, losing their eyes’ glimmer in the meticulous
drawing extracted from darkness, if what is seen today
is that outline where stone chisels sky? Thus,
we conclude, it is from inequality that harmony
is born, and it is human chaos that,
from the void, brings forth everything we admire.

excerpt                         ©paulodacosta
from:  The Cartography of Being,  LPO 2012 –
Paperback & ebook sold by / Amazon.UK
Nem todos os que construíram as catedrais viram
o mesmo. Uns, ergueram torres e pináculos, à luz do sol,
e chegaram ao céu; outros, metidos nas criptas,
pintaram infernos à luz de velas, deixando no chão
o lugar para os mais anónimos dos mortos. Os
que chegaram ao cimo, receberam o olhar divino e
viram o júbilo das madrugadas primaveris; os
que ficaram no fundo, arrancando à humidade das paredes
o gesto alucinado dos demónios, trocaram
obscenidades e doenças. No entanto, a catedral
é única; e quem a visita, apreciando a totalidade que, dizem,
nasceu de uma visão do absoluto, não pensa
em pormenores. Que importa os que trabalharam
na sombra, perdendo a luz dos olhos com o minucioso
desenho arrancado à treva, se o que hoje se vê
é esse contorno em que a pedra trabalha o céu? Assim,
conclui-se, é da desigualdade que nasce
a harmonia; e é a desordem humana que faz brotar,
do nada, tudo o que admiramos.
This entry was posted in Translating and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.