Dry saliva in the mouth of day, very dry
you can’t even glue a stamp on your mother’s letter
and the dust is glued on nails and eyes
like grief on the skin of the sea.
We went up and down the hill
carrying rocks and death on our backs
under the curse and the whip
we counted the water and the stone
life and death — we got used to it
the longing faded
even anger lessened
only the resolve didn’t wither.
Between the spade and the shovel of the night
the comrades rest
with clenched teeth,
with their fists as pillows.