Albert Wass: The Secret of the Heart-Palace

Every heart has a fairy garden,
In the midst of it, there’s a palace,
In each palace, a room with a dark lattice.

In the dark room, there’s a sitting man made of bone.
Darkly. Alone.
Sometimes, he appears in the springful palace
In form of a fiddle’s tone.

And then it becomes Fall – Fall of dreams and desires,
Silently twirling as falling leaves.
(In your heart, as if thousand knives were cutting:
Your crying, crying man made of bone.)

You’re saving him from strangers’ eyes by laughing,
Oh, nobody should see him: more precious than treasures!
At others’ palace, you’re jealously peeking:
He has no treasure! No treasures!

Every heart has a fairy garden,
In every fairy garden, there’s a fairy palace.
And inside, deeply hidden, somewhere, SOMEWHERE:
Every palace has a room with a dark lattice.

Translated from the Hungarian poem, A szívpalota titka (1932).


In Memory of a Flower

I’ve been living on a little planet,
Just as the most poet;

I had nobody to talk, to chat,
The people whom I met
Are gone.

My planet is bare and grey,
By the way;
As usual.

But, it happened that
I wonder’d at
A flower.

What she’s doing on such a land,
Where living can’t pretend
To live?

In my surprise, in my hurry-
I shelter’d her in worry;
To protect.

What a beauty, what a pureness,
My planet was in happiness;
A flower!

I had a flower to talk, to chat,
Laughing with and at –
That was magic.

My planet was no more solitary,
She named it as the galaxy
Of Flower.

Flower, flower. I thanked God,
For the surprise I have got;
A living planet.

Not just divine, but enchanting
Was this happening,

Once upon a time, I woke up:
My planet just broke up –
Where’s Flower?

Where’s Flower? She was mine.
Alone, how could I be fine
On such a planet?

Dead, coarse, dry and dreary,
Without my dearie,
But mine.

Live the life of the dead,
Forget what you had;
You are alone.

Keep teaching as you taught
Her by your thought;
As a poet.

Then, write a poem “in memory”
On the land of a solitary
Pocket poet.

Write “in memory” to believe,
Even if it’s hard to believe;
She’s gone.

A flower that coloured the bare,
That could give life if dare;
But no.

Since the planet on which I’m living,
Are for poets, not for living;
I’m dying with memories.


Sceptic steps

Like wearing iron boots are the legs
While they are walking in sceptic steps;
They trail anchors of questions,
And push the route in doubtfulness.

To do, not to do – like an effortless fort
With open portcullis for the horde;
Like sceptic centurions wearing the mort
As armor, and despair as sword.

Heavy marching thunders the roads,
And trembles the heavens;
While simple facts are the calling roars,
They sound like mere hallucinations.

No flower remains unsquelched,
No road leads to an end;
The past, present and future merged
In a wasted, wasted land.

The ground wasn’t touched by my legs
When I left my fairy castle;
No dreams, hopes on the steppes
I am, with myself in a big hustle.

Like wearing iron shackles on my feet,
And a sack on my head;
It seems obscure to run or defeat
The fairy roads ahead.



I’ve watched the movies of my ages,
Even those that were before,
I’ve read books of teenage feelings,
I’ve read about leprechauns.

The world has become an endless series,
The scenes repeat in every lore,
There’s no book that could surprise me,
The same stories in every store.

My eyes are saying they are full of seeing,
They are replete of colours,
Even my mouth is fed of disagreeing,
They both wish to remain closed.

While my eyelids are feignedly sleeping,
While my lips are firmly closed,
The darkness is calling and appealing,
But the movie colours shout.

The films keep shooting everywhere,
Like an ever writing Molière,
But do the plays interest me more,
Or not seeing them anymore?


Jinns in my head

Sometimes, I’m walking with Jinns in my head;
I hear clear things that haven’t even been said,
I see ideas that yet nobody has had.

Sometimes, I’m walking with Jinns in my head;
I bear the colour before people see it as red,
I feel by what people have been led.

Sometimes, I’m walking with Jinns in my head;
I steer my steps as the thoughts have me led,
I peer the ways that they said.

Sometimes, I’m walking with Jinns in my head;
Sometimes, I feel they have made me grad,
Sometimes, I fear they make me bad.

Sometimes, I’m walking with Jinns in my head;
For understanding, sometimes, I’m so glad,
But sometimes, I’m just sad and mad.


A title

Somewhat, I may seem a bit antiquated
          On the score of the want of a purposefully chosen title –
As you, poet, use the space to spare your miss from an ile full of missile,
Use the enter to pray the sender of the letter while she’s re-entering your life,
Or use a final stop when the apothecary has brought your final tisane…
     –  As well, you are fairly obliged of the use of titles
if you are – at least – a little educated.

If the life holds no purpose except of poesy,
        Then what does?
If the poet does not give purpose to his poesy,
        Then what does?

Does the picture of a lonely moment with the smell of coffee
hold any purpose without saying:
Good Morning?

Does the impression of a parade among thousands of you
hold any purpose without saying:
I’m still looking for you?

Does a public poem, in your private opinion,
give any purpose without saying:
This is your title?

You see what I’m saying, already…
        I can decide: “You’re ready!”
and stop the lines of writing in convincing and crying
because you are already there where I wanted you to be…
… standing with full of purpose led by this poem
       where my title begins and ends,
exactly here:


On the borderline

I am neither happy, neither sad;
I’m an empty – empty lad,
Waiting for some and someone’s care;
But having got it, I barely care.

It’s hard to believe that I’m loved;
I hate myself un- and be-loved,
Fearing that this hate is catching;
And I ever remain unmatching.

None could bear being so burdened;
I fear and seek abandonment,
Being burden on my own and else;
Death offers the only solace.

I’m on the borderline of living and dead;
I’ve pushed away everything I had,
Unknowingly who I am, but it’s not an excuse;
I have only social misuse.

I doubt if ever I could share this life;
Should I ever share this life,
While words are so easy to share;
But what being shares despair?