André du Bouchet

October 3, 2012 du Bouchet André



     all things look as if

they are waiting, as soon as we see them.                                      is it by their

   proven resemblance

that we will know they are, at the same time that we are,



  itself, it is

reality                         —                        other, and resembling nothing, that we

desire.                                         already, in the doorway, it flowers.               in

the halo flush with bloom, which cuts through all

appearance.                                                                                  almost unmoved.


the tile.                                                                                                        the vines

  of the façade.                                        in

the branchings, the breakage of the sky.               this is how the given world’s

fatigue, its freshness, cracks and flowers.


    it happens

that, once we’ve reached the thing we have desired,

it may slip away into an infinite otherness.                                                        no

illusion if the window returning the color of its light to the

blue we do not see is forever merged with

that blue.                           who, then, will say the name of recognized things?

already, through our waiting, they have flowered.





      toutes les choses ont un air

d’attente, aussitôt qu’on les voit.                                                      est-ce à la

resemblance avérée

que nous les saurons, en même temps que nous,



     elle-même, c’est

la réalité                 —                  autre, et qui ne ressemble à rien, que nous

désirons.                   déjà, dans l’embrasure, elle fleurit.                         dans

le halo d’une floraison au ras, qui perce à travers toute

apparence.                                                                             presque sans émoi.


le carreau.                                                                                           les pampres

de la façade.                                                    dans

les branchages, le bris du ciel.                                                     ainsi se fêle, et

fleurit, la fatigue, la fraîcheur du monde reçu.


   il arrive

que, parvenus à cette chose même que nous avons désirée,

elle se perde dans une différence infinie.                        nulle

illusion si la croisée renvoyant la couleur de sa lumière au

bleu qu’on ne voit pas, est pour jamais confondue  avec

lui. qui, alors,             dira le nom des choses reconnues?

déjà, dans cette attente, ells ont fleuri.




Translator: Hoyt Rogers divides his time between the Dominican Republic and Italy. His poems, stories, and essays, as well as his translations from the French, German, and Spanish, have appeared in a wide variety of periodicals. He has published over a dozen books, which include his own poetry and criticism as well as editions and translations. His most recent translation from the French, Second Simplicity—a collection of verse and prose by Yves Bonnefoy—was published by the Yale University Press in January 2012. With Paul Auster, he is currently preparing Openwork, an anthology of André du Bouchet.

André du Bouchet lived in France until 1941, when his family left occupied Europe for the U.S. After the war he returned to France, befriending the poets Pierre Reverdy, René Char, Francis Ponge and the artists Pierre Tal-Coat and Alberto Giacometti. In 1966, with Yves Bonnefoy, Jacques Dupin, Louis-René des Forêts, and Gaëton Picon, he founded the cultural review L’Ephémère. In 1961, du Bouchet’s first major poetry collection, Dans la chaleur vacante, was published to critical acclaim, and he won the Critic’s prize for that year. In 1983, he received the National Poetry Prize or “Prix national de la poésie”. André du Bouchet died in 2001 at the age of 76, in Truinas, Drôme.