Hélène Cardona

Shaft of Light
December 14, 2014 Cardona Hélène

Shaft of Light


Smile behind the lips

her face a sunflower

in a garden of trees


The eyes of the seagull open

Choose your beach

tears caught in the throat


Stand in mountain pose

breathe the flame of the ghost

a shift in reality


I lost my mind

hanging in the void

A voice enters


shaft of light

God’s finger in the shallows

consoling my inner weather



From Life in Suspension (Salmon Poetry, 2016)

Hélène Cardona is the author of seven books, more recently the award-winning Life in Suspension and the translations Birnam Wood (José Manuel Cardona), Beyond Elsewhere (Gabriel Arnou-Laujeac), winner of a Hemingway Grant, Ce que nous portons (Dorianne Laux), and Walt Whitman’s Civil War Writings for WhitmanWeb.

She wrote her thesis on Henry James for her Masters in American Literature from the Sorbonne, taught at Hamilton College and LMU, and worked as an interpreter for the Canadian Embassy in Paris. She received fellowships from the Goethe-Institut and the Universidad Internacional de Andalucía.

Her work has been translated into 16 languages. A Romanian translation of Dreaming My Animal Selves was published by Junimea Editions in 2016. She also translated Rimbaud, Baudelaire, René Depestre, Ernest Pépin, Aloysius Bertrand, Maram Al-Masri, Eric Sarner, Jean-Claude Renard, Nicolas Grenier, Christiane Singer, John Ashbery, John FitzGerald and Maggie Smith.