Irene Santori è nata nel 1973 a Roma, dove vive. Ha pubblicato le raccolte di poesia: In tempo e disparte (Gazebo, 2006) e Hotel Dieu (Empiria, 2015, Premio Lorenzo Montano 2018). In preparazione: Il Libro dei Liquidi. Tra le opere di critica: Jean Racine. Poesie Sacre. Introduzione, traduzione e commento (Leo S. Olschki, 2011), “Hélas! Trop éclaircis”. Inganno, autoinganno, disinganno dal teatro ai Cantiques Spirituels di Racine (in Rivista di Storia e Letteratura Religiosa, 50/3, 2014, Olschki). Autrice e conduttrice di Radio3-Rai (Uomini e Profeti, Storie, Vite che non sono la tua, Wikiradio) e della Radio della Svizzera Italiana (Laser). Dal 2011 è socio fondatore e attuale Vice Presidente della Associazione/Archivio Vasco Bendini.

irenesantori@tiscali.it

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POESIE

da IN TEMPO E DISPARTE

X
a giorno fondo confitti

e dalla vera foiba sale
la parola che la sopporta

XIV
——tempaccio porti
che m’accosta
e io conserta ai venti
che il largo avevo preso
in parola

XVI
Sull’afasia
finché afona
come poca foglia
posso dirti una
asma dalla lacuna cavata

dato
non è
dare

XVII
Sull’afasia
già trama
nel rosso velare
di me un boccone moncone
venuto a mancare l’orlo
dove premono un nodo
le iniziali dell’urlo

XXVIII
come la veste dell’erba
ti adatti alla terra
con un pendere di stelo senza presagi

e con l’incuria dei corvi
avvisti la vendemmia dei rovi

da HOTEL DIEU

X
La resurrezione di Lorenzo
guarda bene
nei miei talloni lo scirocco,
che in questa breve terra
entro
come il piatto fondo dentro al piatto piano,
come l’anello bruno del tuo caffè bruciato
e nell’uovo come al bianco stretto rosso
quando torno ti trovo? –
e nell’età del ferro l’età dell’oro

XVI
A tre anni dice anima mia, anima santa
Àmina mia àmina tanta
reggi il buio in questa stanza
reggi me che passa il re
passa la regina
mi nasce una bambina
dalla gola da una gamba
àmina mia àmina tanta

àmina tanta àmina mia
notte eumenide notte arpia
mano nottambula che tagliavo
quando piccina piccina rubavo.
Il maltolto, il manomesso,
il sottosopra, oddio la spia
àmina tanta àmina mia

àmina mia àmina tanta
sento il fiato che si allenta
ora mi sciolgo e scivolo via,
ma il tuo latte sul vassoio,
freddo bianco a inghiottitoio

XXXIII
La visita
Cos’è tutta questa guerra
imboscata negli autobus
dentro al guanto vinoso del tramonto
e di storni venuti da Cartagine?
Ieri era in vena
ai miei discendenti
il maschio e la femmina assiepati
sulle mie ginocchia
sudate, nell’ambulatorio comunale
della santa vaccinazione
– infertilità – separazione coatta dei minori – ipovisione? –

Oggi il ministero dell’igiene
accompagna i moribondi
nelle residenze disinfettate,
il cambio pulito, i calzini col cognome
e la benedizione del mercoledì.

Dietro agli scuri
papà non li vedi?
maturano i limoni
infiammabili
come i tuoi bronchi
come il mio aspetto
e la nostra lacuna

perché non posso andare oltre il tuo letto?

se quando amore brucia il resto fuma

XLI
Fiorì la specie ospedaliera
degli Hôtel Dieu in terra di Francia,
agli infermi il baldacchino, il comodino, il cucchiaino
– nomi comuni
di cosa? –
e vestiboli per lo stato liquido
e vestiboli per il taglio nobile,
la pesatura dei cuori,
il quinto quarto.

Maiuscola dell’Ospite
nel tutto sesto del portale,
che tutto torna tutto
zero,

circonferenza sua

l’avevo stretto, l’avevo stretto linfonodo
e mio
pugno

XLII
Hotel Dieu, il corpo di mio padre
Sciogli i polsi dal rosario
e raccoglimi da terra
la testa la testa
asciata.
Richiuditela dentro
questo cesto di costole
e mandami giù
come quello che hai ingoiato

senza masticare.

Sora nera notte corporale
del tuo lungo gessato
lasciapassare

a un’alba, a un’ansa, a un viale
carpale almeno
almeno iatale

XLVI
Credo
Registro i rumori di sopra
scarpa da uomo, legno, legno, donna,

riduco in polvere le unghie

passo in cucina, la luce è una vescica,

sorveglio la scadenza del cibo
e la fiamma altissima dei roghi.

La casa si riempie di soldati,
e tra loro un piccolo
caschetto biondo,

abbasso il fuoco,

addormento il mio braccio

perdo

peso

LI
a G
Vieni al mio viola
fossile, all’abside viola, al mio
sasso,
nel letto dei flussi
dei cicli che revochi

sorteggiami chiudimi ringraziami

E tutto il rame dei miei muscoli
correva nel reticolo
del tuo nome impossibile

LII
a G
E adesso coprimi la schiena,
metti che mi riesce di dormire,
magari bene
come fai tu,
in fila, in processione,
caro nel mio guanto

della redenzione

da IL LIBRO DEI LIQUIDI

V
Del voi (in un quartiere di Palermo)
è che all’Albergheria tutto ritorna
in vita, infuso, soluzione
dove s’imbucano le strade.
Anatomia dell’orlo e lieto fine
amaranto della mia lunga gonna negli zuccheri,
tenuta su al ginocchio
perché sto in piedi sopra l’occhio
e le spade
di pesci.

E lei dev’essersi specchiata a lungo
prima di uscire sul balcone e scegliere
tra le anime di sotto
chi le dicesse che giorno era
  ventuno agosto signora, giovedì ventuno agosto­
rassicurata mi ha sorriso,
e dalle ossa della mano
sulla testa mi ha stillato
giorni cento d’indulgenza

XLI
Crash-test Dummy
Dummy Dummy
sat on a wall
Dummy Dammy
had a great fall,
Dummy? Dummy rispondi.
Dummy, Dummy senzapalle!
Testaduovo e Testacoda.
Dammy sale in macchina e si chiede
perché ogni volta che si siede
va a schiantarsi contro al muro,
Dummy Dummy involontario
comincia a credere al Dio vero.

Dummy Dummy
sat on a fall
Dummy Dummy
had a great wall
si reperta, si reperta, si reperta
la rottura della felpa

Stessi in piedi sarei uno e ottanta
per settantasette chili
lei cinquanta o poco meno
il mio ometto ne ha ventuno
quattrocentosessanta cavalli
nella macchina del capo
e un mm… nella gomma

si reperta si reperta si reperta:
la scomparsa di un coperto
dalla gita fuori porta

Dummy Dummy
sat on a wall
Dummy Dammy
had a great fall,
all the king’s horses and all the king’s men
Couldn’t put Dummy together again.
Dummy? rispondi.

Si reperta si reperta si reperta:
la mm… del mm… ha un mm… nella cappotta
i cavalli scarenati ed i soldati
del re li rimettono in pié
tutti e tre
tutti e tre
tutti e tre
disassati nel transetto,
pianta a croce del brevetto

XLV
Acida
(perché lui le ha buttato l’acido in faccia)
ti si vede tutto anche la lisca
tienti l’occhio ché quello là si succhia
e respira dalle branchie
se il naso cola
nella borsa
(– ha fatto lei, maestro, quest’orrore? – )

fauna marina a faccia corta
metà avvocata, metà estinta e pleistocene
perché si sentisse lui, bellino,
Erectus
Homo
(– ha fatto lei, maestro, quest’orrore?
chiese Otto a Pablo
davanti al cavallo sgocciolante
del presepe basco raso al suolo
non io, voi –)

E tornava in rada l’onda, passando i frangiflutti,
la marea scopriva il molo
di sasso
e osso
e madreperla,
ne restò la dentizione
e venne poi la petizione
il talk-show in televisione
una foto all’infusione
ma non uno che dicesse, poi,
non son stato io, ma noi

PORTOGHESE

No Tempo e à Parte
X
no dia adentro conflitos

e da verdadeira fossa emerge
a palavra que a sustenta

XIV
——mau tempu trazes
que me acosta
e eu entrelace aos ventos
pois o mar aberto eu havia tomado
au pé da letra

XVI
enquanto áfona
como pouca folha
posso dizer-te uma
asma pela lacuna cavada

dado
não é
dar

XVII
já trama
no vermelho velar
de mim um bocado monco
que faltou na beirada
onde urge um nó
as iniciais do grito

XXVIII
como a veste da erva
te adaptas à terra
com un lance de caule sem presságios
e com o descuido dos corvos
avistas a vindima das sarças
(traduzione in portoghese di Léha Nachbin)

 

ENGLISH

from THE BOOK OF LIQUIDS

Foreword.
—–At the age of five, my son Nicola glued some sheets of paper together and named them: The Book of Liquids. Every page a liquid, a dripping of color, a middle way between a thickening and an erasure. For each page the wrong word to say it. I leafed through and closed it, thinking that from then on, everything I would ever write would carry this title.

*
lean back
stay still
don’t show up
you idiot

—–Thirty years ago, Rinaldo, my father’s younger brother, wanted to take me hunting with him, not far from home, to the surrounding fields. He took the rifle and I followed him. In the middle of winter, I remember the cold, the absolute silence of the species, the flooding grey and my confidence in him, who was completely crazy. What did I know then, and what do I know still, about migrations, seasons, passages? “Who could ever come to find food around here, something to live on? This is the winter of my drawings”. The cell. And everything is breakable. Like my fingers, without any more nerve endings, with my glass nails resting on them, from which the cold has taken away any thickness. And I had to hold my gun on them. But a rifle is incredibly heavy, heavier than a ten-year-old girl. I was unbalanced all the way forward and couldn’t plant my boots, so, because of the different density of the mud, one leg was plunged, the other one slipped away from me to the side and I felt my heel slithering out of its case and going up the leg. With a blow to the groin I brought my legs back together and pushed the heel into the sole of the boot, but this time naked, because the sock had all rolled out to the forefoot. So I realigned my knees, confined to the ground like poles, to suck up the marsh. My entire panting body resumed to sweat, from which I felt again the volume, the layers, the inguinal tear, the torment. But the rifle? Where had it gone? I raised my eyes and saw a very light shadow in the sky, like those incinerated little souls hovering over bonfires, falling perpendicular to the ground, centered by the shot that moved my temples. Rinaldo with his free hand grabbed the dogs by the collar and yelled “run and get it!”. I straightened myself out and ran, like a scarecrow, I was stuffed, muddy, on fire, spineless, what was not dripping, and had I swallowed. From my kneecaps the mud dripped down my ankles and from there into the heel, sloshing at every stride and with the tangled sock sawing my foot in two. And I oozed, climbed and cried, cried and swallowed all the things which my weak dam gave way, coming down at the first blow. I reached the body and picked it up. I rummaged like a fury, felt a sternum and a warm fibrous, visceral convexity, under, over, the wing, the skull. Where did we hit him? Where? How far had the probe gone, how far inside the saveable, how far inside the edible? “It’s very beautiful,” Rinaldo told me from behind. He took it in his hands and grabbed his falling head. I noticed the very long beak. I saw the very long beak turning on itself. I saw the very long neck turning on itself between the fingers of my uncle, who twisted it in one, two, three, four, five, six, seven times.

Twisted little column of the domes,
little column.
Polychrome twisted of the mullioned windows, little column.
Mullioned window. Binoculars of this is hunting
and neck and collision of routes and sighting,
vision of this is hunting
entire pain and vision
of what I have done

He gave it back to me and I held it together while we were walking. Mercy all to myself, for his warmth given to my hands. But suddenly, something horned and electric hit me, pinched my coat, a spring moved away from me. It was a leg, it was the beak. He was more alive than ever, and hysterical was getting bigger and was beating against the tomb that embraced him.

“Lean back, stay still, don’t show up, you idiot. I will take you home, hide you, feed you, live with me. You’re alive, you’re safe, you’re mine”. But it didn’t know anything about it. I was surprised that I didn’t know which way to immobilize it anymore. Until one wing opened, fanning out the feathers one by one, generating itself by contact with one another under my terrified eyes, from one to the other the law of the trigger, the engine of opening and capture were transmitted. The last feather struck Rinaldo’s arm. He pulled it out of my chest.  One, two, three, five, eight more times. One more.

All I remember is the front door
the bleeding heel
the end of everything and something
the detached vault of the great Inappetent, of the Imminent, lurking between the flooded rows of the great Book of Liquids.
The bell then,
Open. It’s me

*

Orbits is one of those

empty words
in the sky only the zodiacal sketch
and the beyond-form just after
the half-moons

there was no time for a whole new story
and I was running to get your eyes
at the end of school

*

Mullioned window. Rinaldo shot himself
was the lamp in the throat, wasn’t it?
Inside the head the entire bull
red planetary eye, all foam, hoofs and stud,
tons and tons of skull,
to let the hostages come out
broken up as one by one.
It was the bliss the roar
you opening the back, – and you can see
fire, circle, tiger, leap
my father –

get out,
cartridge, little thing, giggle
you run barefoot in the hallway
sweaty in your tank top, kid,
out as it’s July!

*

tonight the open seas are yellow-Naples
or maybe it’s me who weeps from an eye
inside an open shirt
it is perhaps the sinusitis that unglues me?

otherwise Sagittarius

*

forgiveness passes on this square
unnoticed as January
and its smooth rains,
as a right glove descends
from the wall in the manhole
and finds at the bottom
the enduring ring

this too is my nature,
from which I was extracted alive

*

recrossing Iron Age
in Golan’s fighter planes

*

What else was Altamira
if not Hiroshima?
hunting scenes, hands in the air
blast furnace
photophobia, everyone was screaming
onomatopoeia
and the remaining eyes
stared at the Open on the side beside them
– neither clothes nor cutlery to share.
We came out of the cave as we did out of the prefecture
that we weren’t even hungry,
it’s that we already liked by now
even only
to observe
how animal fat burns,
how long it takes,
and for a moment there flashed in us a doubt
or a memory? a memory – and someone loosened his tie –

It’s me that exhausted oil

*

Kill and eat
a sheep from afar
stares at its skull
next to that of a jackass
hoisted by its nose
in the royal blue pronaos
of the sane butcher
facing backwards with the dagger
and I do not know
which cut of a camel
bursts like
the armored car’s tire.
They drip as if it were raining but it does not stop
– make room inside the bucket for my lung –

and this is Nablus
and this is nothing

from HOTEL DIEU

The visit
What is all this war
ambushed in buses
inside the winy glove of sunset
and starlings coming from Carthage?
Yesterday it was in the vein
of my descendants
the male and female crowded on my sweaty
knees, in the municipal clinic
of the holy vaccination
– infertility – forced separation of minors – low vision? –

Today the Ministry of Hygiene
accompanies the dying
in disinfected residences,
the clean change of clothing, socks with surnames
and the Wednesday blessing.

Behind the shutters
can’t you see them daddy?
flammable lemons ripen
like your bronchi
like my appearance and our gap.

If when love burns, the rest smokes
why can’t I go beyond your bed?

*

 for G

Come to my fossil
violet, to the violet apse, to my
stone
in the bed of the flows
of the cycles that you revoke

draw me close me thank me

And all the copper in my muscles
ran in the grid
of your impossible name

*

 For G

And now cover my back,
suppose that I can sleep,
maybe as well
as you do,
in line, in procession,
dear in my glove

of redemption

*

—–A lullaby to take leave. Ten years ago, in my three-year-old daughter’s cot, late at night. It wasn’t her who didn’t want to sleep, it was me who didn’t know how to make her go to sleep. Then she put her arms around my head and said to my ear “my soul, my holy soul”, but how can a three-year-old girl say that?

Oh lous, my lolly lous
hold the darkness in this world
hold me while the king passes by
passes the queen
I give birth to a little child
from my leg
from my throat
Oh my lous, my lolly lous

Oh my lous, my lolly lous
eumenide night fury nightfalls
a night owl hand which I cut
when as a tiny baby I stole.
The ill-gotten gains, to fool around
the upside-down, oh Lord the spyhole
Oh my lous, my lolly lous

Oh my lous, my lolly lous
I feel the breaths that dissolve
now I melt and slip away.
But your milk is on the tray,
White Cold as a sink-hole
(Translated by Elena Buia Rutt)