Teodor Dună (b. 1981) is the author of four collections of poems: train of 31 february (2002), cataphasis (2005), playing alive (2010), human objects (2015) and the anthology Der lärm des fleisches (translated by Georg Aescht), Edition Solitude, Germany (2012). Fragments of his poetry were translated in French, Swedish, Spanish, Hungarian.


The following poems were translated by Alina-Olimpia Miron and Monica Rusu.


the noise of flesh


now, when the noise of grass covers the noise of flesh,

my body wrapped in cyanides, ever more alive

I am to myself. from the bottom to my skin I am alive to myself.

I see clearly, I see anyway: the morning starts walking, fed up, lamed.

her light hangs from my body, shows it –


and it is not enough.


like a thousand animals at large my flesh rolls out of me,

ever more, ever heavier, ever stifling,

under my soles it grounds in heaps.

you see it – and it is not enough.


and even more, the noise of grass covers the noise of flesh.

I’m hanging to myself, my edges are meddling each other. only a few

have endured. and only then I feel how much granite

this golden sun radiates, and how much granite in me.

I still feel replete. though I am but a bundle of edges,

and still alive, to the quick and the skin I am alive to myself –


and it is not enough.


I  see clearly, I  see anyway: the morning walks, fed up, lamed.

her light hangs from my body, overturns it.

and how much granite this golden sun radiates

and how much granite everywhere.


and when the noise of grass covers the noise of flesh

and covers it entirely, I  go to my remains.

I  feast, I  feast, I  do not cloy –


and it is not enough.



die quietly


you die quietly for days on end and nobody gets wind of it.

you’re walking and the street descends more and more.

there’s a meadow. someone’s giving out blessings

his mouth filled with sand.

and you descend, below your laughter, below the seas


and for everything to be wonderful

someone is throwing a dog behind you. you look at it but you don’t stop

and the snowy chrysanthemums to nowhere you are carrying

and as you advance, the houses capsize more, you seem to be sliding,

then it turns colder, the dog keeps falling behind you

and several blind women approach you, saying “oh look at that, a body”,

then they run off, fading away and you die quietly for days on

and nobody gets wind of it.


and you walk more serenely as if you wouldn’t care,

several houses are burning down,

a girl on fire passes by, you don’t care she called out your name,

you’re just walking on the descending street,

for a while you‘ve been carrying a wheelbarrow of children

and nobody gets wind of it and they suddenly open their eyes,

crying out “oh look at that, a body”, then they hide away


in a clump of birch tress. each tree is rocking someone else.

they’re all burning. even the dog is burning, falling behind you,

and the whole world is burning,


only you continue to walk and the snowy chrysanthemums

to nowhere you are carrying

and the path breaks down, you don’t stop, everything around is burning down,

and you walk quietly downwards, a dog by your side, and nobody gets wind of it.



the bed


when even the room, enshrouding you,

becomes too much to bear.

when even the bed, knotting the sheets thinned by your skin,

becomes too much to bear.


when every part of the room hurts.


then, miraculously, as if from a great love

the edge of the bed slowly sprawls in

the entire room. reaching up

to the window. breaking the window

and overflowing in the valleys of air

like seething water.

it spreads like an avalanche enveloping

the entire city.


then yes, the room, the bed don’t hurt anymore.

the drowsy bed rolls you from one edge to another.

you see yourself leaving the city behind, almost crying with joy,

it lifts you higher, you see the sea shining,

the snow-capped mountains glistening

and tears well up in your eyes, tears of joy in the clear, fresh air.


and I am so, so happy and still

in this bed stretching as if another sky between the earth and the sky.

a sky of wood and arches, of thinned sheets.

and I am so happy to be above oceans, poles, tropics, hovering inertly


that so much happiness is granted me

that so much awe is granted me.


and I cry with happiness,

trapped in my wooden sky of arches between earth and sky

and my bed bearing me like an awed lover

from one side to the other.

and suddenly, from the bed covering the entire world

I see the clear, blue, starry sky,

as the entire sky only for myself.


and I cry and I am so deeply happy

that my tears burst from inside, wrapped in flesh

and I keep crying and the flesh through my eyes breaks away.


but how much happiness am I to have and how much awe

in my wooden sky of arches, in the sky of sheets

trapped between the earth and the sky.


and there is no one to see me,

no one at all and no pain anymore




Sunday song


they know very well their part: to sit in heaps and sing.

somebody hurried to bury them.

one can dig into the sky, but cannot drive the path away.

it seems a Sunday song.

they’re all children. a bit crippled, but dressed in white

and very beautiful. they overturn the air or barely move it.

they do not converse with the morning.

they see the path, yet cannot advance.

to the moon it leads on and on.

they dig into the sky or just evade it.


they know very well their part: to sit in heaps and sing.

a cluster of hands pushes them.

rest is not for them.

someone has left them their body.

for a hundred years did he leave them at the edge of a white road

only to see it. they know it well: they will not reach their moon,

but they’re digging away and in heaps

they’re singing. the air lulls them,

buries them and overthrows them deeper and deeper.


and on and on they sing. one can dig into the sky,

but cannot drive the path away.





as the salt murmurs in the seas


as the salt murmurs in the seas, so does your heart

you take me in your arms, tell me we are equally cold,

meaning the cold is for both of us.

we almost touch, you show me your wounds, so well-nursed,

you’ve taken such good care of them,

you’ve tamed and groomed them,

they resemble pets – and we gaze at each other as if through reversed crystals.


you rest your wounds next to me

and with ease we carry along entire banquets.


this night is too ancient, you say.

and your hands seem to offer me handfuls

of frozen birds – you ask me

to enshroud you in wild vine,

I cannot, I tell you,

I show you how abandoned we are and the rest we are to have.


almost I take you in my arms,

almost I beware your wounds.

and we gaze at each other, how else if not through reversed crystals.

not a word comes from our lips.

and as the salt murmurs in the seas, so does your heart.





the floating


from now on we are just two holes, my love, you wear

an evening dress and I carry you over

these fields of roses. you want only to float.

this silence makes you more beautiful than ever.

I usher you among the mayflowers.

and look, still this silence engenders our kiss on live flesh.


but long awaited and only for us is this love.

we just float over these fields of roses.

only some are rotten. the others are just wild

and under our embrace our hands become soft,

brittle. with every touch our fingers wipe out slowly.

you should know we will not come back.

it’s just a rest in between the rains, my love,

from now on we are just two holes.

just step on me and I will open myself under your soles.


we’ll be half naked, half in darkness,

and at your edge, I will speak to you and in the silence of our hands

a dead man’s love for his dead beloved.





green Sundays


far from us our kiss.

it lives in a sun-drenched country.

around it a garden full of tall grass.

where it has taken refuge beds are warm and soft.

there Sundays are as green as your green eyes.


you mustn’t know anything.

we are fulgent, fulgent and torn.

hills are hovering over everything as scarves on the wind.


our kiss lives far from us.

there even the seas are as green as your green eyes.





your eyes are preparing for dreaming


your eyes are preparing for dreaming

at noon and at night and they are always ready to dream

I rest at their side for a while longer


and only by coming undone

this is how you fathom the air – like a hundred orchards mantled with salt

you disclose it you could even leave taking the air with you could laugh

telling me this


you say look our shoulders are as smooth as stones

and a winter can ache so


your eyes are wiping up day after day

or are just preparing for dreaming

at noon and at night and they are always preparing for dreaming





it’s that stone-still silence arising from the death.

my back is turned upon myself. a thousand

light years between us. there is nothing I can do.

this silence is my dusk and dawn. it’s all right.

it’s all right anyway. nails stay fastened in the flesh of the fingers

like thick rods and hair is rooted in the pillow.

on hands the wounds

of rest blossom from sunrise to sunset

and descend further down. he emerged from the snow

after three days

night’s first grass. this is the finest year of them all.

it started with an ending, it bloated above all the reasons,

it poured into the others like beautiful, jaded flesh.


neither water, nor land. I lie still in this room.

this stillness is for and in behalf of and for the one who is no more,

for the one who wanders holding her hair.


hands are now two paddles in freezing water.

mouth wears a smile. it’s all right anyway.

“when there is nothing, you start to drift.”


I’ll shield myself all night long.

I’ll say nothing to no one.




under my veins


with the pin she used to hold her hair up

the hands taught themselves to unbind their veins to unravel them

throughout the room like tinsel and then the body owns me

owns the blue dress and I can pull through without veins

for this we are overjoyed and she speaks

and her voice falls over the room

on the bed on the carpet her voice it turns down the bed picks up

the clothes lying on the floor

puts them on the chair they cling to my veins

and I can pull through without veins

and the air gets the crust of her eyes and the colours

of the sky become slowly the colour of her eyes

and I walk beneath my veins

through the room through her voice and the room

stretches before me as does the sky above me

her eyes mirroring colours of autumn


and then a soft bed

in which you plunge

ever so slowly



the lilies


back in ’84, in those times of beauty and quiescence,

I went in my mother’s room without her knowing

and she was so beautiful and smelled like trees

washed by rain and I saw how

beautiful she was and the lilies were ascending

under my very eyes, under her eyes

watching me, chin of stone, and they were rustling

and night was falling in the room

or the huge leafs of the lilies were just covering

the window, rising and twining.


and then silence fell as if we found ourselves in the middle of the sea

and my mother’s lilies began to coalesce and their stems

like arching arms

climbing to the ceiling and that silence and then that silence alone

as if it were death.

it was not death but back in ’84 and the two of us were in her room.


she took my arm, a tight grip, and said

“don’t close your eyes. always keep them open

for if you close your eyes now the black waters will flood

and all of us will drown.”


but the lilies have long since reached the ceiling

and a glimpse of our bodies has been hard to catch.





in sickness you move slowly like in a woman.

your body glides in her gestures, in her cold hand

smelling of outdoors,

covering you up with the blanket, resting her hand on your forehead

and all of your body’s warmth

lying in wait for the lingering arrival of her hair.


in sickness you move slowly like in a woman

and your body is tilted

as if it did not know how to make its way

through fog. and you hear their wings

ever closer, clashing with her skin and her skin

laying over like the first snow in winter,

as though she was falling into

oblivion descending towards you.


it was hot

and she was sailing into the night.











the fourth floor


on the fourth floor, the air is rough

and getting thinner. the floor comes down

and the room seems to lift further up, above the world.

the sky in here is too much of a burden

and the ceiling bends, cracks, curves, turns into a vault

and the window into stained glass and the noises get louder


and the greater the distance, the closer everything is.


the sky above weighs down.

and in the room another sky pushing the ceiling up

and I can barely see its end and the sky outside rumbles and the ceiling

closes in like a giant belly, pressing against

my face and the sky here gains its strength, billows, balloons

and the ceiling tears to tatters and the sky in here

craves for the sky out there

and my flesh caught up between the two

braces for a great defeat. the ceiling like a thin canvas

does not know where and the walls of the room quiver

and the sky in here hammers, the sky above pounds and someone else

trying to break out of my body, jostles my bones from within.


and a great silence was in them, a great silence in me

and a great silence all around.