Treasure Island

Cesare Pavese

(9 September 1908 – 27 August 1950 / Santo Stefano Belbo)

The Cats will Know


Again the rain will fall
on the sweet pavements,
a light rain
like a breath or a footstep.
Again the breeze and the dawn
will blossom lightly
beneath your footstep
as you reenter.
Among flowers and sills
the cats will know it.

There will be other days.
There will be other voices.
You will smile alone.
The cats will know it.
You will hear antique words,
tired and empty words
like the disused costumes
from yesterday's festivals.

You too will make gestures.
You will respond with words—
face of Spring,
you too will make gestures.

The cats will know it,
face of Spring;
and the light rain,
the hyacinth-color dawn,
that tears the heart of one
who no longer longs for you,
they are the sad smile
you smile alone.
There will be other days,
other voices and awakenings.
We will suffer at dawn,
face of Spring.

Submitted: Sunday, March 25, 2012

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