Episode #3 | Raluca Petrescu
— Raluca Petrescu is the kind of poet that beckons the “look closer” expression. Her verse evokes a range of emotion that we could only hope to capture with the palette of Paris. Join us for another literary adventure! Music by Alkis (part 1) and Zoë Keating (2).


the freshness of it all
every day ends us.

the parallel, elating fears
of being more and nothing more than being.

how suddenly it strikes,
unfurls the Chinese rope trick,
bright, multicoloured death of the lesser.

tell yourself, although distressed by beauty,
that the stars are not a chain

time and again the return of this world’s landscape
                          pure and hidden
it does not ebb to spite your marveled heart,
it does not heed your fear.

Iridescence, miming the origin and secret of a canvas,
the tender armies of the clouds, always being painted
on mirrors ever more created
And you, multiple and painful streak in the shine
You, indigent mirror,
as treasure transmutes into treason on these poor alchemists, your eyes and lips.


Desire has the land of plenty at its core
And blood was never any thing but radiance within us

As the dusk pounds with nowness
the sap of things, so loud
It seems to say that urgency is stronger than the craft
and one will never man the other.

“When I saw you the earth stood still”
or rather – this is what the rhythm says
A story, breath of the world,
enameled and reverent halo
that words sing of themselves.
And who can stop them?
They are the pit we sink in,
our abyssal vocation to stray,
our resounding exile.
Can they learn hesitation?

I bring forth all my drive,
all the tempests be spent
just to muster one glimpse of hesitation.
and stop the words from racing
and lay them down in love
and make them turn their heads
make them forget their names
and sing silence out of the ground.

About the Poet

Raluca Petrescu was born in 1990 in Iași, Romania. She enrolled in the Ecole Normale Supérieure of Paris in 2012, and finished a MA in Comparative Literature at the Sorbonne under the supervision of Jean-Yves Masson, working on Shakespeare, Fernando Pessoa, and Gerard Manley Hopkins. She translates to and from Romanian, French and English. She has published poems in The Bastille and the Belleville Park Pages, and an article on Rimbaud in Rimbaud vivant.

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