With the Fingers

what can be expected of an old boy? That he books an appointment with specialists

merely for them to confirm his irredeemable deterioration
as if he really needed to be told

that he’s killing time
that his desires like him are retiring without rapture from a life of stepping forth and drawing breath
his kin, the city, take revenge for his dirty old tricks and petulance

stairs multiply in front of him
soapy pavements
barely a pin
a little hammering of the wind break his dentures
in the hotel sink
and just to finish them off the night elves hurl them out of the window
and the neighbours complain about the unearthly racket
damn these old codgers s
ome say they smell as foul as tramps
or prison walls
because the stench of a class of adolescents in summertime
turns one’s stomach

but in a different way

Luisa Futoransky

translated from Spanish by Philippa Page