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Nárciz's telephone call in leapmouth

Ágnes Lehóczky

Reading from Southbank Centre's Poetry Parnassus festival, 2012. Reading in Hungarian.

Nárciz’s telephone call in leapmouth

The telephone is the one thing to survive it.
We can speak only briefly.
Yet from the receiver seagulls are pouring out.
Circulating in the narrow tunnels of my ears.
And suddenly I am rolling in the salty air too.
These words are nestlings learning to fly
fluttering – some of them are bound to fall.
So let this be my contour. Washed away.
Your face is a drained watercolour.
Here it rains all the time.
I deserve it. My eyes trickle down the glass of the phone box.
I stuff the gulls, my couriers, into the phone.

Can you hear time?
Short screams. This is the message.
I would rather they shut up – slamming my hand to the receiver.
It occurs to me it is better not to hear them for you.
It is cruel I know.
I haven’t got a birthday, do not call.

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