Ernest Farrés

De Catalaanse dichter Ernest Farrés i Junyent werd in Igualada geboren op 21 juli 1967 en woont in Barcelona. Hij werkt als journalist en redacteur voor het supplement van La Vanguardia, Farrés publiceerde zes dichtbundels: “Clavar-ne una al mall i l’altra a l’enclusa” (1996), “Mosquits” (1998), “Edward Hopper” (2006), “Els efectes imprevisibles dels camps magnètics” (2011), “Blitzkrieg” (2011) en “Los Angeles” (2015), met illustraties van Joan Longas. Elk gedicht in het tweetalige “Edward Hopper”, waarvoor hij de Englantina d’Or van de Jocs Florals van Barcelona ontving, is gebaseerd op een schilderij van de Amerikaanse kunstenaar. Farrés heeft ook een bloemlezing uitgegeven van de hedendaagse Catalaanse poëzie, “21 poetes del XXI”(2001). In Spanje is Edward Hopper zowel in het Catalaans als het Spaans bewerkt voor het toneel. Engelse vertalingen van Farrés ‘gedichten zijn verschenen in Calque, The Nation, PN Review, Two Lines, Words without Borders, World Literature Today en Zoland Poetry. Voor zijn blog “La República Poètica de l’Ernest Farrés” ontving hij in 2010 de Vila Martorell-prijs voor literatuurblogs in het Catalaans.

House by the Railroad door Edward Hopper, 1925


House by the Railroad, 1925

I fantasize that luck is placed
within my reach. Of course, there’s different kinds.
Take the kind that turns up ad hoc, for instance,
and the kind that unfolds
backwards. There are deficits and surpluses
of luck. By the same token, we have good luck,
everyday luck, luck-you-don’t-remember,
and bad luck, a.k.a. misfortune.
Luck that puts us on easy street and luck
that’s an asp, a scorpion fish, a wild boar, a starling.
I have a vision of train tracks half covered
with grass and rust, hurling themselves
—like a jagged line or a blade
with an iridescence that catches you by surprise—
against a tomorrow without an Achilles’ heel.
And I imagine who-knows-what plains
and mountains untouched by human hand
and still not weatherproofed
at the mercy of nor’easters, downpours, and heat.
But the fantasies don’t stop here.
Like the rip in a memory of a past life,
another jolts my mind:
I recognize myself holding vigil
inside a huge Victorian house,
vacant, foreboding, phantasmagorical,
without going crazy for what I can’t possess
yet cut off from the world, supreme example
of original innocence.


Hills South Truro door Edward Hopper 1930


Hills, South Truro, 1930

I climbed to the very top of the mountain
to speak to myself.
You know,
about the present, the future.
Bared to the sun,
I held the prerogative
of seeing many things coming to pass.
It must be due to the scent of earth
and distant sea, which were consoling.
It must be due to birdsong. It must be
due to trains. Is it due to the grandeur
of this vista?
As the sun
beat down I allowed my gaze to range
and understood my limits and that a slew
of pot-boilers hinders me. That I am diverted
by punk points of light. That I dedicate
no immortality to doing nothing.
That I hear a whisper from inside.

I utter not a word and the surrounding world
suddenly possesses me and bears me away.
I grow lighter. Become leaf-bearing
and even burst into bloom. From the peak
I delight in the superhuman
contemplation of dominions.

But thereafter my lot will be
to descend to the plain, returning
to my kind, and thus, as if I were such,
I shall resume an everyday likeness
squandering time and resources.


Vertaald door Lawrence Venuti

Ernest Farrés (Igualada, 21 juli 1967)

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