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The Fire’s Night

Beneath nine nights a ring of stars explodes.
But the fire is silent. A beech-tree stump.

Like a hunter lurking in a hidden blind,
it has been here forever, age after age.

Like a dry fungus, like a black omen,
it endures beyond time and from season to season.

Leaves are igniting like violet incense.
But the fire is silent. Black. Shadowy. Earthen.

Like violet incense the leaves ignite.
But the fire is silent. In the sinewy root, night.

Ацо Шопов, Гледач во пепелта, 1970
Translated by Rawley Grau and Christina Kramer, 2022