January 06


Elisha Porat

Translated from the Hebrew by Cindy Eisner

Do you remember, in Juara, at the end
of my platoon leaders course, in that rainy
December? I took
the wet military blanket
on my shoulders, and you were covered
with the sleeveless cape that I drew
for you from my belt? Do you remember
the gleaming chalky rocks?
The whistle of the wind passing
through the trees? And how we roamed
all night, looking for a piece
of dry ground? Do you remember
how we were happy
anyway, on awakening, with first
light, when embracing we stumbled on
a broken stair, in front of your door,
and we stood suddenly flooded with the thick
flowing aroma of the flowering carobs?


Image: Mike Medow, Carob Tree


Elisha Porat, the 1996 winner of Israel's Prime Minister's Prize for Literature, an Hebrew poet and writer, has published 21 volumes of fiction and poetry, in Hebrew, since 1973. Elisha Porat was born in Kibbutz Ein Hahoresh in 1938. His works have appeared in translation in Israel, the United States, Canada and England.