All things you contain, more than a mortal can thole.
You are light and darkness in a double bowl.
How the one shimmers, naked and cool.
Mother-of-pearl air over water of pale opal.
Seeing, seen,
ready for day's gleam
dawns slowly open their mussel shell.
But dim and still does the other brood,
also a mussel, though deeply there, where the sea is mute.
since creation closed
it protects the mother-sleep's secret room.
All things you are, the whole of my being's goal.
You are the day and the night in a double bowl.

Translated into English by David McDuff in "Karin Boye: Complete poems".

Swedish original

Copyright © 2005:
Translation from Swedish into English: David McDuff

Published with the permission of:
David McDuff, translation.
May and Hans Mehlin, Layout.

For more information, please visit the website of David McDuff and his own pages with the translations.