101

I have crossed countries and seas to be nowhere
Near you, Oh my daughter. I offer up your obsequies
But find no comfort in ceremony, in empty words
You cannot hear. What fate! To lose your
Beautiful mind and tear yourself away from me.

Nothing else, no nothing else, ever, never, nothing
Will bind us together again: tradition deceives
With empty repetition, sad gifts no one receives,
An order of service bitter with a mother’s tears.
Oh my daughter, for eternity, gone and here.

 

 

101 is a loose translation of Catullus’ most famous poem written for his dead brother, transposed to the voice of a mother mourning her daughter.