An excerpt from

by Pierre Nepveu translated by Judith Cowan


We're seeking the spoor
of that which has neither memory nor voice
when, wordless, we set foot in the cafeteria,
where hot meals are no longer served,
absorbed by the enigma of this airy edifice,
its windows towering over empty runways
with the far-off line of jagged evergreens
marking the uplands as if the north
were awaiting here the hour for the attack,
prepared, in its hint of hunger, to engulf
the innocence of men--
if God-the-Father up there
still knew how to see or speak to us
he'd laugh no doubt as we sometimes do when,
faced with children in need of explanations,
we take pleasure in their absurd inventions
for which there is neither rhyme nor reason.