hot-air balloon

Colette Leinman

Translated from the French by Sabine Huynh

One can make all sorts of odd things fly

a ball
a kite
a hot-air balloon
an iron

unsteady configuration for sure


you just need to implement a digital control system

the shape doesn’t matter
as long as there are wings

bathtubs were seen flying

it only takes a bit more work
than a plane

which is quite natural


On peut faire voler plein de choses bizarres

un ballon
un cerf-volant
une montgolfière
un fer à repasser

configuration instable sans doute


il suffit d’y mettre un système de contrôle

la forme n’a pas d’importance
il ne faut que les ailes

on a vu voler des baignoires

c’est juste un peu plus compliqué
qu’un avion



From: Colette Leinman, Ce qui reste d’écorce (L’Harmattan, Paris, 2008).


Colette Leinman is a visual artist and a poet. Her doctoral thesis is about exhibition catalogues and the avant-garde. Exhibitions of her work have been shown in galleries and museums around the world. She has published two collections of poems in French with L’Harmattan (Paris): Des comme si à croire et à rêver (2004) and Ce qui reste d’écorce (2008). For more information, please visit and

Sabine Huynh is a poet, novelist and literary translator. She was born in Saigon in 1972, grew up in France, and currently lives in Tel Aviv. Her work has appeared in anthologies, literary journals, and newspapers in Europe, North America, and Israel.  She initiated and edited (together with A. Lacelle, A. Paoli, and A. Tournaire) the forthcoming world anthology of modern French poetry by women, pas d’ici, pas d’ailleurs (Voix d’encre publications, Sept. 2012), and is awaiting publication of her first novel, La Mer et l’enfant (Galaade Editions, Jan. 2013).




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