Wisława Szymborska

Identification

I’m glad you came—she says.
Have you heard about the plane crash on Thursday?
So that's exactly why
they came to get me.
Supposedly he was on the passenger list.
And so what, maybe he changed his mind.
They gave me some pill, to keep me from falling down.
Then they showed me someone, I don’t know who.
All black, burned except for one hand.
A shred of his shirt, a watch, a wedding ring.
I got really angry, for that’s certainly not him.
He wouldn’t do this to me, to end up looking like that.
And those shirts you can see in just about every store.
And that watch is just an ordinary watch.
And these our names on his wedding ring
are common names indeed.
I’m glad you came. Sit here by me.
It’s true that he was supposed to be back on Thursday.
But how many Thursdays are still left in the year.
I’ll put the kettle on right away to make some tea.
I’ll wash my hair, and then, what then,
I’ll try to wake up from all of this.
I’m glad you came, for it was cold there,
and he’s only in this rubber sleeping bag,
he, that is that unfortunate man.
I’ll put the Thursday on right away, I’ll wash the tea,
for those names of ours are common indeed—