Specchio – Mirror

Specchio – Salvatore Quasimodo

Mirror – translation by Denise DeVries

And here on the trunk
gems burst forth:
a newer green than grass
resting the heart;
the trunk seemed dead,
already entombed.
And everything tastes of miracles;
that water from clouds
today reflected in ditches
bluer than their piece of sky,
that green that shatters the crust
that just last night was not yet there.


Ed ecco sul tronco
si rompono gemme:
un verde più nuovo dell’erba
che il cuore riposa:
il tronco pareva già morto,
piegato sul botro.
E tutto mi sa di miracolo;
e sono quell’acqua di nube
che oggi rispecchia nei fossi
più azzurro il suo pezzo di cielo,
quel verde che spacca la scorza
che pure stanotte non c’era.


Salvatore Quasimodo was born in 1901 and trained as a civil engineer. He translated the poetry of Neruda and Eluard, among others, and is considered one of Italy’s foremost poets. His work was part of the Hermetic poetry movement, which used symbolism and allusions to express feelings. He received a Nobel Prize in 1959.

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