Süleyman (Svenska)

Süleyman, du kan inte vänta dig att jag ska hålla koll på vilken kille i ditt harem som för tillfället har din gunst eller inte, så kan du inte bara skriva mig en lista på vem som just nu är bra och vem som är dålig?

“Jag älskar dig!” sa han.

1. Det du åtrår, det bestämmer du dig för; det du bestämmer dig för, det blir din handling; och som du handlar får du skörda.

Först var jag tyst, sen vände jag mig om för att med kylig artighet fråga, “Ursäkta att jag frågar, men exakt vad är källan till din kärlek?”

2. Jag försöker att förstå saker som är väldigt svåra att förstå.

“Det är du, såklart, du är källan till min kärlek!”

“Jag?” sa jag, och försökte låta överraskad.

“Ja, du!” ropade han, och såg längtansfullt på mig, som ett barn som ber om något det vet att det inte kommer att få. Mitt hjärta började slå med ömkan och bestörtning och således blev jag tvingad att framföra charader så djävulskt osannolika att de skulle verka malplacerade till och med i en Shakespearepjäs.

3. Så som många djur tjänar människan, så tjänar varje människa gud. Utan hans godkännande kan inte ens ett grässtrå röra på sig.

27. Jag går vidare, jag triumferar på vägen.  

85. Man ska fundera på allvarliga saker först när man blivit helt och hållet är besatt av Dionysus, och sedan nykter.

“Visst, jag älskar dig också,” sa jag och hoppades på att vara klar, att gå hem och få lite förlösande sömn. När jag såg in i hans desperata ögon borde jag ha kunnat gissa vad jag nyss satt i rörelse. Även de mest okunniga kan, som hundar, spåra lukten av åska. En rasande våg lyfte mig upp till sitt krön och bar bort mig. Oupphörlig och krävande. Stormen rasade vidare i dagar, i månader – ett helt år förflöt. Allt man vet faller bort om man glömmer bort vem man är, men jag mindes, och levde länge nog för att få se slutet. När jag lämnade ondskans trädgård genom flätade portar, slog mitt hjärta snabbare, och mina bröder omfamnade mig och hällde upp ett utsökt vin åt mig.

4. Bröder slog vakt om platsen där jag anlände. Från vad hade de fötts? Vad lever de på? Vad grundades de på? Vem har bestämt att de ska kunna dricka så mycket, o ni vise män?

Mina bröder, ert vin är för starkt för att man ska kunna dricka det ofta. Ändå kommer jag tillbaka för mer. Kom ihåg, mina bröder, att hicka som denna är en bevingad bön, som kan höras till och med på Baalbek.

Det kommer alltid finnas män som honom, eller jag kanske borde säga: pojkar som honom, som jämför sig själva med din storhet, och hatar det, inte för vad det är, men för vad de själva är eller inte är.

5. När jag tas emot av Änglarna, när kommer han då tänka på mig?

De kan avundas till och med ett barn. De pratar om förnuft, men är vansinnigt känslosamma. Må helgonen skänka dem artighet innan fallet.

6. Jag svär att jag troget, lojalt, och hederligt ska tjäna mina älskare och deras legitima efterträdare, överlämna mig själv åt dem med all min styrka och uppoffra, om det krävs, mitt eget liv för att försvara dem. 

Det är kallt som marmor på tunnelbanestationen, tunnelns käkar är ömma och bortom dem måste havet ligga, där stormarna ryter. Hallelujah!

7. Avges ett löfte, så närmar sig bus.

När hans vänlighet försvunnit vägrade jag vika mig, jag var utan tvekan magisk och vidskeplig. Jag försökte bara visa hjältemod. Så vad ska jag göra nu? Jag avser att visa att min heder är mig mer värd än mitt eget liv. Kärleken förändras inte, men är ändå orsak till alla förändringar.

11. Marcus, Gud välsigne dig.

Jag vet att det är lättare att svara på böner från en man som har besvarat andras böner.

Gudinnorna Anath och Astarte slogs samman till en gudom, som kallades Atargatis.

Jag vet att det är lättare att svara på böner från en man som har besvarat andras böner.

Han Som Rider På Molnen. Fenicierna kallade honom Baal Shamen, Herre över Himlen.

13. Vad mitt namn betyder? Gåva från Gud.

95. Und wenn die Welt voll Teufel wär und wollt uns gar verschlingen, so fürchten wir uns nicht so sehr, es soll uns doch gelingen.

30. Vem? Jag? Heder, ära, och evig seger!

Närhelst sann kärlek visar sitt ansikte (och döden äntrar genom mitt fönster) kommer den att vara sitt eget bevis. Han ser minoansk ut. Han ser byzantisk ut. Han ser baktriskt ut. Jag gillar hans utseende. Det kommer inte finnas någon förvirring. Det kommer inte finnas någon förvirring. Det kommer inte finnas någon förvirring. 

38. När armenier når toppen av klimax kommer de i kaskader. 

39. Du vet, han hade verkligen kunnat rädda vår vänskap, återställa den till lycka och dygd – men det gjorde han inte. Ynkrygg!

62. Välsignade är de som sörjer för de ska komma att bli tröstade.

93. Medelst de vackra läppar som Skaparen lät mig besitta, så kysste jag med min mun: knarklangaren, bartendern, skaterkillen, arkitekten, målaren, diplomaten, och alla de andra också.

Men han som reste sig emot dig, och hade ondska i sig, Süleyman – honom skall du glömma. Men nu, bakverk med saffran, Süleyman. Du flyger som en hök, du kacklar som en gås, Süleyman. Den där hemliga formen, dina två ögonbryn, Süleyman, är som två armar på vågen som väger varje dag och natt. Vad är det, Süleyman? Dina ögon får alla våra hjärtan att svämma över med ljus. 


Text: Ian Memgard
Översättning och bild: Zola Gorgon

Süleyman (English)

Süleyman, I cannot be expected to keep track of which dude in your harem is currently greenlit or not, so listen – why don’t you write me a list explaining who is currently good and who is bad?

“I Iove you!” he said. 

1. What you desire, you resolve to pursue; according to your resolve, so is your deed; and according to your deed, so you reap.

I said nothing for a moment, then turned with icy politeness. “Forgive my asking, but what exactly is the source of your love?” 

2. I’m trying to understand things which are really hard to understand. 

“It’s you, of course, you are the source of my love!”

“Me?” I said, trying to sound surprised.

“Yes, you!” he cried out, and looked at me wistfully, like a child asking for something it knows quite well it won’t get. My heart began to beat with pity and dismay, and so I was forced to act out a charade so diabolically improbable that it would seem out of place in one of Shakespeare’s plays.

3. As many animals serve a man, so does each man serve God. Without His sanction not even a blade of grass can move.

27. I’ll pass on, I’ll make triumph on the way. 

85. One should deliberate serious matters first completely possessed by Dionysus, then sober. 

“Sure, I love you too,” I said, hoping to be done with it, go home and get some redeeming sleep. Looking into his desperate eyes, I should have guessed what I had set in motion. Even the most ignorant catch, like dogs, the scent of thunder. A tumultuous wave lifted me onto its crest and carried me away, incessant and demanding. The storm raged on and on, for days, months – a year passed by. All prior knowledge shatters if you forget who you are, but I remembered, and lived to see the end of it. Leaving behind the wicker gate of the Garden of Evil, my heart quickened and my brothers took me in their arms and poured me a delicious wine. 

4. Brothers attended the place where I arrived. From where were they born? By what do they subsist? On what are they founded? By who regulated, can they drink so much, ye wise men?

Your wine is too strong, my brothers, to drink of it often. Still, I will come back for more. Remember, my brothers, hiccups like that are winged prayers, they can be heard even at Baalbek. 

There will always be men like him, or perhaps I should say, boys like him, who take their own measures against what’s great in you, and hate it not for what it is, but for what they themselves are, or aren’t. 

5. When I’m received among the Angels, at what times will he think of me?

They can envy even a child. They talk about reason but theirs is a lunatic sensitivity. May the saints toss them some manners before the fall. 

6. I swear that I will faithfully, loyally and honorably serve my lovers and their legitimate successors, and dedicate myself to them with all my strength, sacrificing, if necessary, my life to defend them. 

In the subway station it’s cold as marble. The jaws of the tunnel are tender and beyond must be the sea, where the storms rage. Hallelujah!

7. Make a pledge and mischief is nigh.

As his kindness ran out, I refused to surrender, no doubt magical and superstitious; nevertheless, I was only trying to be heroic. So, what am I going to do now? I intend to show that my honour is valued more highly than my own life. Love does not change, yet it is the cause of all changes.

11. Marcus, may God bless you. 

I know it’s easier to answer the prayers of a man who has answered the prayers of others.

The goddesses Anath and Astarte were blended into one deity, called Atargatis. 

I know it’s easier to answer the prayers of a man who has answered the prayers of others.

He Who Rides on the Clouds. In Phoenician he was called Baal Shamen, Lord of the Heavens. 

13. What’s the meaning of my name? Gift from God. 

95. Und wenn die Welt voll Teufel wär und wollt uns gar verschlingen, so fürchten wir uns nicht so sehr, es soll uns doch gelingen.

30. Who? Me? Honour, glory, and eternal victory! 

Whenever true love appears (and death shall enter in through my window) it will be its own evidence. He looks Minoan. He looks Byzantine. He looks Bactrian. He’s got the look that I like. There will be no confusion. There will be no confusion. There will be no confusion.

38. When Armenians reach the summit of their climax it really does cascade.   

39. You know, he really could have saved our friendship; he could have restored it to happiness and virtue, but would not. Coward!

62. Blessed are they that mourn for they shall be comforted.

93. By means of the beautiful lips that He who created me let me possess, I kissed with my mouth: the drug dealer, the bartender, the skater dude, the architect, the painter, the diplomat, and all the other ones too. 

Now he who rose up against you, and there was evil in him, Süleyman – forget about him. Now the cakes of saffron, Süleyman. You fly as a hawk, you cackle as a goose, Süleyman. That secret shape, being your two eyebrows, Süleyman, are like the two arms of the scales weighing each day and night. What then is it, Süleyman? Your eyes flood all of our hearts with light.


Text: Ian Memgard
Image: Zola Gorgon

My Boyfriend

Watching him snort.

Maybe I should go back to my world tour.

I am stronger by it than the strong, I have power by it more than the mighty.

I’ve been provided, my boyfriend has provided it to me.

The place of restraint is opened. The place of restraint is opened to my soul.

His body is stretched out, the steps are lifted up, and so are my thighs. 

I am weak and feeble. I am weak and motionless in the presence of my boyfriend.

I have stabbed my own heart in the making, performing things for my boyfriend. 

I have opened up to myself every highway in town. 

I have become a prince. I have become glorious.

I have been provided with what is necessary. 

I have shot arrows, I have wounded the prey. 

I have been provided with a million enchantments. 

I smell the air coming forth from his nose; I am exalted by reason of this thing. 

I have made an end of my failings; I have removed all my defects. 

I am the Satrap of my boyfriend.

My poetry was so brand new that my boyfriend fucked me numerous times that night. Many people heard about it and wrote it down in their diaries. Afterwards my boyfriend said, “God can do anything – that is why carbon dating equipment works and that’s also why I can fuck you this much”. We used to live in peace for many months. Sheep played in every vale and valley. Then my boyfriend got bored. He held a conference and told all his friends about a coming war. He said the battles were, “flesh vs spirit, truth vs lies, love vs hate, sanctified angels vs demons”. The things my boyfriend told his friends really amazed me. When we got home from the conference my boyfriend pulled up a book that was lying in a pile with a bunch of papers on the table and showed it to me. 

“Let’s look at this book”, he said. 

I opened it and flipped through the pages one by one. I looked at him and asked, “Now what do you say?” 

“Have you understood what the book is about?”

“It’s a book about claims”, I replied. 

“Dude”, he said and patted me on the shoulder. Later on, after a few beers, my boyfriend started informing me about how to fill out claim documents by writing the cost of each warrant and it didn’t take me long to understand how it was done. 

“Starting tomorrow, I am asking you to come and help me with my work”, he said and looked to see if I would accept or refuse. From then on, I became his great assistant in preparing claims according to travel application documents that came from the government. I did the work with great effort and care until my boyfriend was happy.

“Now listen”, he told me one day after praying for us. “Sit here and rest. Don’t worry because here you are at home. I will take care of you, and God willing, I will get us what we need.” I thought he was joking. It is painful to think your boyfriend is joking when he is being serious. This made him very angry. “Name the market where you can buy a boyfriend, and I’ll go buy a new one for you if you can’t take me seriously!” he said and slapped me across the face. I was so surprised. I thought his hand was stuck solidly only to my heart. It surprised me even more when he called me a faggot at mass. “So if you, my dear boyfriend, the person in whom I place all my trust, start calling me a faggot during mass, let me remind you being a faggot is not a disease! You know very well that when things go from bad to worse, you’ll be seeking me out – I am gone!” I ran away in tears.

Later that evening he took me out dancing. We had such a good time I completely forgot about what had happened. If I could tolerate being called a faggot at mass, I could also tolerate a slap now and then; just a moment to donate what the heart allows. Now, if you’re listening to my story, you’ll notice I talk about memories. Is it even possible to live without belonging to anyone? My boyfriend is an ill tempered man. 

So, they say he’s a bad boy. Tell me, how bad is he exactly? People say he’s using me, and the lies they have spread have traveled all the way to Brussels, to Paris – from Paris they came back to Berlin, and from Berlin the lies even reached Tokyo! What is it with my boyfriend’s name? The clothes that he wears fit him very well and make him look good. When they see me walking next to him downtown, it troubles them. I reject the greetings of a bunch of clowns. What do they want me to tell them? After all, a person’s reputation is harmed the most by what you say to defend it. They criticize my boyfriend at night and during the day too. They do not get tired. They have disrespected my boyfriend a lot. I’m tired of these people, the kin of mosquitoes. They keep on gossiping with their friends and flatmates. Sure, my boyfriend’s conduct might be a little impudent, but his heart has never lacked principles. Has anyone else had this type of boyfriend in the last 8 years? I’m the only one, and this is my vindication, my authenticity as herald of our love. My boyfriend’s presence scares people. I don’t know why. I’m tired of telling people to leave me and my boyfriend alone, the way they left Jesus on the cross.


Text: Ian Memgard
Translation and image: Zola Gorgon