Poems by Roland Orcsik
(Translated by Zoltán Lengyel and Tara Skurtu)
A Bulb in the Sludge
I sat on a trunk
close to the flow of Tisza.
The brownish green
river carried sediment.
A bulb got stuck
in branches on the bank.
Through the slim fissures
in the glass sandy water leaked.
The one-time bringer of artificial
light was cast out in the wild.
It looked as if it was looking
for its roots within the Tisza
underworld sunk into sludge,
ready to dissolve –
unable to decay.
“My skin sits on me like the shirt of Nessus.”
(Derek Jarman: Blue)
I leaned my bike against a huge fallen trunk. Dezső ran forward, losing himself in the orgy of smells by the shore. The cracking of branches told me where my dog might be. I followed him slowly, made several detours to the water, knelt by the fluid sanctuary. A fish emerged, I was not sure whether it was a chub or a crucian – it is even less clear now – it splashed into the millpond calmness of the surface. I climbed back to the path, starting to call the dog, nowhere, began to be scared, he must have found a den for himself, hid himself away, never to reappear, the ancient law has won. I didn’t give up, called him again and again. In the meantime I saw blue
flecks, blue flashes before me. I thought it was only my eyes dazzling,
so I rubbed them. Flecks began to blur, they grew larger and multiplied. Finally blue flew
from the sky, from under the earth, painting space, come,
I’m your chalice,
As if I’ve gone blind, but seen blue shades instead of nothing, blue tree trunks, blue lines of branches stretched like cobwebs, I spat blue suffixes, in the bay of the womb the rusty ball
laying low laying low
Birds squawking blue, birds chirping blue, birds screaming blue, your mind is
a crater blue!
Fish crawled to the shore from the depth,
gasping blue, blue phlegm flowing out from them. Hate is with you,
stroke it! I breathed damp blue. The leaden air was getting heavier
drop dead drop dead drop dead drop dead
whether it is there or not just
pit yourself! Blue was getting at me, too, enmeshing me bit by bit. You want to love me,
I want to love you, to love your whip,
in a stone vessel my heart your heart the prophecy is heart pulp Tisza centaur: I became half man
half a blue reptile,
now I am the lord of guts,
be quiet, my kiss,
The skin stretched on my body, blue suffocated me, I gasped, I wanted to break out,
I wanted to suck myself out from
my seed my seed I saw
got woven into got splashed into got pickled into.
Then someone, or I, bit my hand. Blue fission on the narrow layer. Blue passion in the flesh.
Blood alone. Blood alone is not blue. It is warm.
I wanna be your dog
Through the prolonged afternoon
the tiresome bus trundles along;
before its arrival
it stops at the village gate.
At the rusted stop
no one’s anywhere;
just a pair of dogs stuck together,
messing around in a bizarre way;
the first one’s hind leg stuck
right into the other’s heated hole.
Their clumsy gasping fills
the drowning land of damp twilight.
No One’s Anywhere
to separate these damned mongrels:
into the rubbed and bleeding hole of Europe
another Europe invades.
Roland Orcsik was born in Becse (Voivodina, Serbia) in 1975. Since 1992, he lives in Szeged in Hungary. He writes poetry, criticism, and translates from a number of ex-Yugoslavian languages into Hungarian. So far he has published four books of poems, and his poetry collection Mahler Downloaded is translated into Serbian as well. His first novel was published in 2016. His works are translated in Czech, English, French, Croatian, Greek, Romanian, Slovenian, Spanish and Serbian languages.