Half an hour

I never had you, nor I supposewill I ever have you. A few words, an approach,as in the bar the other day—nothing more.It’s sad, I admit. But we who serve Art,sometimes with the mind’s intensity,can create—but of course only for a short time—pleasure that seems almost physical.That’s how in the bar the other day—mercifully helped by alcohol—I had half an hour that was totally erotic.And I think you understood thisand stayed slightly longer on purpose.That was very necessary. Becausewith all the imagination, with all the magic alcohol,I needed to see your lips as well,needed your body near me.

Translated by Edmund Keeley/Philip Sherrard

via C.P.Cavafy.

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