Poetry of Jessica Jonas '09 Wins Top Prize in Newest Babel

Illustrations in Babel, Volume 3, are by Olga Mesa.

The third edition of Babel, the Department of Foreign Language's journal of creative writing, has been published. The journal includes submissions of poetry, short stories, and original articles, most of them created by Moravian students of all majors.

"The journal is a celebration of the diversity of languages taught and spoken at Moravian College," said Claudia Mesa, assistant professor of Spanish and Babel co-editor (with Professors Nilsa Lasso-von Lang and Axel Hildebrandt). "The possibility of being published helps motivate the students and encourages their creativity." The journal, which includes brief bios of the contributors, also serves as a keepsake for students, she added.

The poems and texts in the newest issue are the result of a spring 2009 contest, "Writing with Tongues." More than fifty submissions were received. "Las pesadillas de la razón producen vuelo," by Jessica Jonas '09, placed first in the Spanish Poetry category. (French, German, and Latin submissions also were received, but three works were needed to award a prize in a given category.) Students, faculty members, and others will be invited to submit entries for the next Babel later this spring. Limited quantities of Babel volume 3 are available from Claudia Mesa.

Las pesadillas de la razón producen vuelo
by Jessica Jonas '09

Como los hombros se encorvan
con el peso de la presión de su seguridad.
las alas infinitas
los gritos que resuenan en la oscuridad.
Yo sé
lo que Goya quería decir:
sin razón, se sacrifica la calma.
Pero yo,
si pudiera, preferiría volar
en las alas feas y perfectas, de los sueños de mi alma.

The nightmares of reason produce flight

The way his shoulders slump
with the weight of the burden of safety.
to the endless wings that sail,
to the screams that reverberate in darkness.
I know
They are monsters. Goya's warning is clear:
without reason, I lose my protection.
Still, I,
if I may, would much rather fly
on the ugly, perfect wings of my spirit's dreaming.