The Rivers
(Cotici, 16 august 1916)

I hold on this mutilated tree
left in this sinkhole
which has the melancholy
of a circus
before the show or after
and watch
the quiet passage
of clouds over the moon

This morning I stretched
myself in an urn of water
and like a relic
rested

The flowing Isonzo*
scoured me
like one of its stones

I pulled my four
limbs together
and went
like an acrobat
over the water

Crouched
by my clothes
fouled with war
I bent
like a bedouin
to receive the sun.

This is the Isonzo
and it is here
I most see myself
as a compliant thread
in the universe

My pain
is when
I do not believe
myself in harmony

But those hidden
hands
give
as they knead me
a rare
joy

I have relived
the stages
of my life

These are
my rivers

This is the Serchio*
from which have drawn
perhaps for two thousand years
my country people
and my father
and my mother

This is the Nile*
that has seen me
be born and grow
and burn in unawareness
over the wide plains

This is the Seine*
and in that muddiness
I mingled
and I knew myself

These are my rivers
melted with the Isonzo.

This is my nostalgia
that in each one
shines through me
now that it is night
and my life seems
a blossoming
of darkness

- "The Rivers", a poem that Giuseppe Ungaretti wrote during his experience in the First World War (translated from Italian, here the original version and some notes in english, "I fiumi"). 

I just studied it for the Italian literature test of tomorrow and..ahh, I like it so much!