Attila József: BANQUET OF GREAT GIFTS

I give you a fist big ruby diamond,
Hang it around your neck and watch it shine on
Above your heart, in the middle of your breast,
Marvel how it glows, like embers, its lustre.

I weave a crown with my eyes for you,
As a goddess, I come to you so
I lay your way with silk and rhymes,
But don’t walk on it – it grows sighs.

If you’re thirsty, I’ll give you the finest wine,
But I leave a few darkening tears inside
And if you feel that the taste is bitter -,
Just drink it, there is no sweeter.

When your body feels cold, I give you my soul,
I wrap your two shoulders with velvet shawl.
And my trembling brain if you’re hungry -,
With me, you’ll be never needy.

And if your tired body wants to rest,
Rest in my arms, – there is no softer bed
And because you will need protection one day:
Accept, please, accept my arms to stay.

Accept them, and do with them whatever you feel,
Though you can’t be cruel to me.
Even if you don’t come, they will all remain yours,
They won’t be called back by weak hours.

Benyamin Bensalah

09.07.2021

Translated from the Hungarian poem of Attila József, “NAGY AJÁNDÉKOK TORA” (1922).

Attila Jozsef: (ONLY THOSE READ…)


Only those read my poems I tell
who knows me well and loves as well
as I am in nothingness, sailing
and I am good at soothsaying

because I faced in my dreams
silence itself as a human appears
and in my heart, there are sometimes mere
tigers and gentle deer.

Benyamin Bensalah

01.06.2021

Translated from the Hungarian poem of Attila Jozsef, “Csak az olvassa…” (1937)

Greek Fire in and out

I’m releasing less attention
because I’m breaking under some tension
from the rules of nature,
being this carbonic ape-like creature,
but I’m still doing my best,
still living even if pain’s ripping my chest.

The days’ve been heavy,
my rhymes have become just as wacky,
rolling down some short-not shots
while playing a lunatic, mad poet’s plots
with loneliness as franchise
that’s sad, not, until the wretch dies.

No harsh feelings, that’s fine,
I’m still holding the line and that’s mine;
I’m born with bigger heart, naive –
this is how I’ll leave, nothing more to achieve,
but till my hands can tremble,
I note myself down, so you can remember.

What a talent, what a treasure,
but has nobodoy to share this pressure,
talking as if it would be shareable
my crazy selves, nothing like cherishable;
no need of “pain, no gain” bullshitting –
I’m just here for some fire-spitting.

Dark, surrounding big-blue ocean,
I’m still burning on its surface in self-promotion;
my flames tremble, and are heavy,
none’s feeding them and I gave up already
since its hunger would eat up worlds,
but I’m just a poor poet who’s running out of words.

Benyamin Bensalah

24.05.2021

Attila József: ARISE FROM THE FLOOD

Frighten me, God,
I am in need of your wrath.
Hurry, arise from the flood,
don’t leave me in nothingness as bath.

I, pushed up by the horse,
and from the dust I barely appear,
not human sized heart’s
knives of torment I am playing with here.

I am inflammable, and like the Sun,
I ignited such a flame – take it!
Shout at me as it’s wrongly done!
Snap at my hand with breaking hit.

And let your vengeance or grace
beat into me: sinlessness is a mistake!
Since having such an innocent face
burns me more than hell’s lake.

In wild, foaming salivary seas
I rotate like a bite when I am to lay
all alone. And I would dare all what man sees,
but nothing makes sense to stay.

To die, my breath
will held back if you don’t beat me with stick,
and like that I will be the gazing death
against your human-faced lack!

Benyamin Bensalah

23.05.2021

Translated from the Hungarian poem of Attila József, “BUKJ FÖL AZ ÁRBÓL” (1937).

Attila József: HOPELESSLY

Slowly, pondering

Man is finally reaching to a sandy,
sad, watery plane,
he looks around thoughtfully, and cleverly
he nods, he doesn’t hope.

This is also how I try without cheating
looking around easily.
Silver slash of an axe revealing
is playing on the tree’s leaf.

My heart is sitting on the branch of nothingness,
its little body is soundlessly shivering,
it’s surrounded with meekness
by the gazing, gazing stars.

In iron-colored sky …

It rotates in an iron-colored sky
the lacquered, cool dynamo.
Oh, noiseless stars in the sky!
The words sparkle between my teeth – –

In me, the past falls like a stone
through the void voicelessly.
The silent blue time leaves me alone.
A sword’s edge blinks up: my hair – –

My mustache like a mellow caterpillar enfolds
my fade flavored mouth.
My heart hurts, the words get cold.
But to whom could I tell – –

Benyamin Bensalah

16.05.2021

Translated from the Hungarian poem of Attila József, “Reménytelenül” (1933).

Attila József: SILENCE

It’s alarming like the roaring sea
And just like the endless snow.
In the depths of his mask sad Death’s below-
Ah, it grabs into the comet of a cowardly Man, me

I throw my trembling soul in front of it.
I listen to my heart – is it still knocking?
And I’m tired of this monotonous music,
Though it’s so good if it beats and it’s solid.

I feel like walking on a swamp
And woe, the ground is sinking beneath me,
But still some soft resistance is whispering in me,

But my ears are stuffed. – Oh, what is still waiting
For me, who is now mute, numb.
With my head down, I succumb.

Benyamin Bensalah

05.05.2021

Translated from the Hungarian poem of Attila József, “Csend” (1922).

Edging story

Monsters give birth to monsters;
they lay their eggs,
spread them with their acids,
scar them,
deface them with claws –
and when they leave the hive,
suffocating from terror,
facing a toxic world
that can’t surpass their own..
..their own toxic pumping
in their very heart
full of scars;
they say
mostly nothing,
but sometimes
they say:
yes, we are just monsters.

Benyamin Bensalah

17.04.2021

Pocket bard

It’s neither my pleasure, nor my style,
but I’ve been drinking for a while.
We already know it why:
some nights are just too heavy being dry.

I had been suffering and crying
even before alcoholic supplying,
but since I have it
I say: freck it.

I’m not looking for acceptance;
I hate myself even in this stance,
but surely I am passing time,
and I find words for my rhyme.

My dear Lord, Dionysus,
is tottaly not like Jesus;
he lets me do my own sacrifice,
and eases me directly by the price.

How should I thank him more
than just live and drink a bit more?
Life is hard even as a drunkard,
but it’s the life of a pocket bard.

Benyamin Bensalah

05.04.2021