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By Yehuda Amichai

Translations from the Hebrew of the nice Israeli poet, Yehuda Amichai, with an advent through Ted Hughes.

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36 Every night God takes his glittering merchandise out of hi s showcaseholy chariots, table s of law, fancy beads, crosses and bellsand puts them back into dark boxes inside and pulls down the shutters : "Again, not one prophet has come to buy. " 39 37 All those stones, all this sorrow, all this light, debris of night hours, ash of noon, all those twisted pipes of holiness, wall and towers, rusty halos, all prophecies which couldn't hold back, like old men, all sweaty wings of angels, all stinking candles, all this false tourism, dung of redemption, bliss and testicles, garbage of nothingness, bomb and time.

We are to be found on picture postcards of our city. Perhaps we can't be seen because we were sitting in a house or too small; the picture was taken from a passing airplane. 18 The graves in Jerusalem are gates of deep tunnels on the day of their opening­ after which they stop digging. The tombstones are beautiful cornerstones of buildings that will never be built. 21 Jerusalem is a place where all remember that they have forgotten something but they don't remember what. And for the sake of this remembering I wear my father's face on mine.

39 37 All those stones, all this sorrow, all this light, debris of night hours, ash of noon, all those twisted pipes of holiness, wall and towers, rusty halos, all prophecies which couldn't hold back, like old men, all sweaty wings of angels, all stinking candles, all this false tourism, dung of redemption, bliss and testicles, garbage of nothingness, bomb and time. All this dust, all these dead bones in the process of resurrection and of wind, all this love, all these stones, all this sorrow.

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