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Restlessness

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Benny Andersen was a popular Danish poet I recently came across. I rather like his witty verses. Here’s the first verse of Restlessness, translated from the Danish by Michael Goldman.

My suitcase opens wide imploring                             
Feed me                                                                      
fill me with socks
stuff me with shirts and underwear
fatten me with folded things
load me with longings and a shaving kit
I beg you
give me one more chance
to be tumbled around in trunks
relegated to backseats
treated like a dog on conveyor belts
let me be emptied
put through customs
and refilled
with dirty socks
half-emptied bottles
abducted ashtrays
let my contents spill out onto foreign sheets
hang on interesting hangers
plop in bidets with a guttural accent.

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