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W. R.
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Post: #31
RE: Post a Poem
THE HARE IS BREWING BEER

by U. Karatkevich

Grey mist is sailing from the mere,
Above the stubble, blank and bare.
"Just look, the hare is brewing beer!"
The people joke about it there.
But with my penetrating eye,
Crouched o'er the fire, I see him clear,
Split-lipped, squint-eyed, long-eared and grey,
And brewing up his barley beer.
With shooting sparks burn twigs of firs,
But he's set firm the cauldron wide,
And with a stick the home-brew stirs,
And tastes it, spitting on one side.
He brews his beer both black and strong,
And for refreshments takes some beet,
Some herbs, hare's-cabbage, green and long,
Some asp-leaves, and the snack's complete!
With Mrs. Hare he drinks a tot,
And gives the kids a taster too.
With high-pitched voices then the lot
Strike up, "Fresh carrots, wet with dew!"
You see them - don't drive them away,
Today just grant them peace and ease,
For even a hare must have his day
Before winter blizzards his whiskers freeze.

1955
Translated by W. May

[...] just as it is not left unto us to choose our ancestors, so we may not choose our nation; we can only fulfil, or not fulfil, the obligations that come from being a member of our people’.
© Dr. Jan Stankievič ‘From the History of Belarus’

[Image: now.jpg]
2012 Sep 28 12:44
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Phlegethon
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RE: Post a Poem
THE HOSTAGE.

A BALLAD.


by Friedrich von Schiller

The tyrant Dionys to seek,
Stern Moerus with his poniard crept;
The watchful guard upon him swept;
The grim king marked his changeless cheek:
"What wouldst thou with thy poniard? Speak!"
"The city from the tyrant free!"
"The death-cross shall thy guerdon be."

"I am prepared for death, nor pray,"
Replied that haughty man, "I to live;
Enough, if thou one grace wilt give
For three brief suns the death delay
To wed my sister--leagues away;
I boast one friend whose life for mine,
If I should fail the cross, is thine."

The tyrant mused,--and smiled,--and said
With gloomy craft, "So let it be;
Three days I will vouchsafe to thee.
But mark--if, when the time be sped,
Thou fail'st--thy surety dies instead.
His life shall buy thine own release;
Thy guilt atoned, my wrath shall cease."

He sought his friend--"The king's decree
Ordains my life the cross upon
Shall pay the deed I would have done;
Yet grants three days' delay to me,
My sister's marriage-rites to see;
If thou, the hostage, wilt remain
Till I--set free--return again!"

His friend embraced--No word he said,
But silent to the tyrant strode--
The other went upon his road.
Ere the third sun in heaven was red,
The rite was o'er, the sister wed;
And back, with anxious heart unquailing,
He hastes to hold the pledge unfailing.

Down the great rains unending bore,
Down from the hills the torrents rushed,
In one broad stream the brooklets gushed.
The wanderer halts beside the shore,
The bridge was swept the tides before--
The shattered arches o'er and under
Went the tumultuous waves in thunder.

Dismayed he takes his idle stand--
Dismayed, he strays and shouts around;
His voice awakes no answering sound.
No boat will leave the sheltering strand,
To bear him to the wished-for land;
No boatman will Death's pilot be;
The wild stream gathers to a sea!

Sunk by the banks, awhile he weeps,
Then raised his arms to Jove, and cried,
"Stay thou, oh stay the maddening tide;
Midway behold the swift sun sweeps,
And, ere he sinks adown the deeps,
If I should fail, his beams will see
My friend's last anguish--slain for me!"

More fierce it runs, more broad it flows,
And wave on wave succeeds and dies
And hour on hour remorseless flies;
Despair at last to daring grows--
Amidst the flood his form he throws;
With vigorous arms the roaring waves
Cleaves--and a God that pities, saves.

He wins the bank--he scours the strand,
He thanks the God in breathless prayer;
When from the forest's gloomy lair,
With ragged club in ruthless hand,
And breathing murder--rushed the band
That find, in woods, their savage den,
And savage prey in wandering men.

"What," cried he, pale with generous fear;
"What think to gain ye by the strife?
All I bear with me is my life--
I take it to the king!"--and here
He snatched the club from him most near:
And thrice he smote, and thrice his blows
Dealt death--before him fly the foes!

The sun is glowing as a brand;
And faint before the parching heat,
The strength forsakes the feeble feet:
"Thou hast saved me from the robbers' hand,
Through wild floods given the blessed land;
And shall the weak limbs fail me now?
And he!--Divine one, nerve me, thou!"


Hark! like some gracious murmur by,
Babbles low music, silver-clear--
The wanderer holds his breath to hear;
And from the rock, before his eye,
Laughs forth the spring delightedly;
Now the sweet waves he bends him o'er,
And the sweet waves his strength restore.

Through the green boughs the sun gleams dying,
O'er fields that drink the rosy beam,
The trees' huge shadows giant seem.
Two strangers on the road are hieing;
And as they fleet beside him flying,
These muttered words his ear dismay:
"Now--now the cross has claimed its prey!"

Despair his winged path pursues,
The anxious terrors hound him on--
There, reddening in the evening sun,
From far, the domes of Syracuse!--
When towards him comes Philostratus
(His leal and trusty herdsman he),
And to the master bends his knee.

"Back--thou canst aid thy friend no more,
The niggard time already flown--
His life is forfeit--save thine own!
Hour after hour in hope he bore,
Nor might his soul its faith give o'er;
Nor could the tyrant's scorn deriding,
Steal from that faith one thought confiding!"

"Too late! what horror hast thou spoken!
Vain life, since it cannot requite him!
But death with me can yet unite him;
No boast the tyrant's scorn shall make--
How friend to friend can faith forsake.
But from the double death shall know,
That truth and love yet live below!"

The sun sinks down--the gate's in view,
The cross looms dismal on the ground--
The eager crowd gape murmuring round.
His friend is bound the cross unto. . . .
Crowd--guards--all bursts he breathless through:
"Me! Doomsman, me!" he shouts, "alone!
His life is rescued--lo, mine own!"

Amazement seized the circling ring!
Linked in each other's arms the pair--
Weeping for joy--yet anguish there!
Moist every eye that gazed;--they bring
The wondrous tidings to the king--
His breast man's heart at last hath known,
And the friends stand before his throne.

Long silent, he, and wondering long,
Gazed on the pair--"In peace depart,
Victors, ye have subdued my heart!
Truth is no dream!--its power is strong.
Give grace to him who owns his wrong!
'Tis mine your suppliant now to be,
Ah, let the band of love--be three!"


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Sep 28 13:03
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RE: Post a Poem

Hälfte des Lebens

Mit gelben Birnen hänget
Und voll mit wilden Rosen
Das Land in den See,
Ihr holden Schwäne,
Und trunken von Küssen
Tunkt ihr das Haupt
Ins heilignüchterne Wasser.

Weh mir, wo nehm’ ich, wenn
Es Winter ist, die Blumen, und wo
Den Sonnenschein,
Und Schatten der Erde?
Die Mauern stehn
Sprachlos und kalt, im Winde
Klirren die Fahnen.


- Friedrich Hölderlin


At The Middle Of Life

The earth hangs down
to the lake, full of yellow
pears and wild roses.
Lovely swans, drunk with
kisses you dip your heads
into the holy, sobering waters.

But when winter comes,
where will I find
the flowers, the sunshine,
the shadows of the earth?
The walls stand
speechless and cold,
the weathervanes
rattle in the wind.


- Friedrich Hölderlin


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Sep 30 15:57
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RE: Post a Poem
Da ich ein Knabe war . . .

Da ich ein Knabe war,
Rettet' ein Gott mich oft
Vom Geschrei und der Ruthe der Menschen,
Da spielt' ich sicher und gut
Mit den Blumen des Hains,
Und die Lüftchen des Himmels
Spielten mit mir.

Und wie du das Herz
Der Pflanzen erfreust,
Wenn sie entgegen dir
Die zarten Arme streken,

So hast du mein Herz erfreut
Vater Helios! und, wie Endymion,
War ich dein Liebling,
Heilige Luna!

Oh all ihr treuen
Freundlichen Götter!
Daß ihr wüßtet,
Wie euch meine Seele geliebt!

Zwar damals rieff ich noch nicht
Euch mit Nahmen, auch ihr
Nanntet mich nie, wie die Menschen sich nennen
Als kennten sie sich.

Doch kannt' ich euch besser,
Als ich je die Menschen gekannt,
Ich verstand die Stille des Aethers
Der Menschen Worte verstand ich nie.

Mich erzog der Wohllaut
Des säuselnden Hains
Und lieben lernt' ich
Unter den Blumen.

Im Arme der Götter wuchs ich groß.



-Friedrich Hölderlin


When I was a boy...

When I was a boy
a god would often rescue me
from the shouting and violence of humans.
Then, safe and well, I would play
with the meadow flowers,
and heaven's breezes
would play with me.

And as you delight the heart
of plants, stretching their tender
arms toward you,

Father Helios,
so you delighted my heart,
and I was your beloved,
holy Luna, just like Endymion!

All you faithful
friendly gods!
I wish you knew
how my soul loved you!

Naturally I couldn't call you
by name then, nor did you use
mine, as humans do, as if
they really knew each other.

But I was better acquainted with you
than I ever was with humans.
I knew the stillness of the Aether:
I never understood the words of men.

The euphony of the rustling
meadow was my education;
among flowers I learned to love.

I grew up in the arms of the gods.


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Sep 30 16:16
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RE: Post a Poem
Vereinsamt

Die Krähen schrein
und ziehen schwirren Flugs zur Stadt:
bald wird es schnein -
wohl dem, der jetzt noch - Heimat hat!

Nun stehst du starr,
schaust rückwärts, ach! wie lange schon!
Was bist du Narr
vor Winters in die Welt entflohn?

Die Welt - ein Tor
zu tausend Wüsten stumm und kalt!
Wer das verlor,
was du verlorst, macht nirgends halt.

Nun stehst du bleich,
zur Winter-Wanderschaft verflucht,
dem Rauche gleich,
der stets nach kältern Himmeln sucht.

Flieg, Vogel, schnarr
dein Lied im Wüstenvogel-Ton! -
Versteck, du Narr,
dein blutend Herz in Eis und Hohn!

Die Krähen schrein
und ziehen schwirren Flugs zur Stadt:
bald wird es schnein,
weh dem, der keine Heimat hat!


- Friedrich Nietzsche


Lone

Shrill shriek the crows
that to the town in whirls roam:
soon come the snows -
weal unto him, who - has a home!

Now you stand still,
look back, alas! how far unfurled!
You fool! You will
escape the winter to the world?

The world - a gate
to thousand deserts, mute and chill!
Who lost his fate,
as you have lost, stands nowhere still.

Now you are pale
and cursed to wander winter's rise,
like fumes prevail
that always seek the colder skies.

Seek, bird, and shriek
your desert-bird-song, worn and torn! -
And hide, you freak,
your bleeding heart in ice and scorn!

Shrill shriek the crows
that to the town in whirls roam:
soon come the snows -
woe unto him, who has no home!


- Friedrich Nietzsche


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Sep 30 22:12
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RE: Post a Poem
Wildgänse rauschen durch die Nacht
Mit schrillem Schrei nach Norden;
Unstete Fahrt habt Acht, habt Acht,
Die Welt ist voller Morden.

Fahrt durch die nachtdurchwogte Welt,
Graureisige Geschwader!
Fahlhelle zuckt und Schlachtruf gellt,
Weit wallt und wogt der Hader.

Rausch zu, fahr zu, du graues Heer!
Rauscht zu, fahrt zu nach Norden!
Fahrt ihr nach Süden übers Meer,
Was ist aus uns geworden?

Wir sind wie ihr ein graues Heer
Und fahr'n in Kaisers Namen
Und fahr'n wir ohne Wiederkehr,
Rauscht uns im Herbst ein Amen.


- Walter Flex, 1917



Wild geese are rushing through the night,
With shrill cry, northbound rangers.
Hazard awaits, take care your flight
And world is full of dangers.

Fly through the night-filled air my friends,
You squadron grey and mighty.
Dawn breaks as battle cry extends
Far o'er the lands below ye.

Fly on, rush on, you grey-winged flight,
Rush on to Northlands safety.
When you fly south again some night,
What will my fate have made me?

We are, as you, a gray-clothed pack,
The Kaiser's fighting yeomen.
Should our flight end with no way back,
Fly south and sound our Amen.



- Walter Flex, 1917 (transl. Frank 2002)


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Sep 30 22:16
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Gaztelu
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Post: #37
The Golden Journey to Samarkand, by James Elroy Flecker
At the Gate of the Sun, Bagdad, in olden time

THE MERCHANTS :
Away, for we are ready to a man!
Our camels sniff the evening and are glad.
Lead on, O Master of the Caravan:
Lead on the Merchant-Princes of Bagdad.

THE CHIEF DRAPER :
Have we not Indian carpets dark as wine,
Turbans and sashes, gowns and bows and veils,
And broideries of intricate design,
And printed hangings in enormous bales?

THE CHIEF GROCER :
We have rose-candy, we have spikenard,
Mastic and terebinth and oil and spice,
And such sweet jams meticulously jarred
As God's own Prophet eats in Paradise.

THE PRINCIPAL JEWS :
And we have manuscripts in peacock styles
By Ali of Damascus; we have swords
Engraved with storks and apes and crocodiles,
And heavy beaten necklaces, for Lords.

THE MASTER OF THE CARAVAN :
But you are nothing but a lot of Jews.

THE PRINCIPAL JEWS :
Sir, even dogs have daylight, and we pay.

THE MASTER OF THE CARAVAN :
But who are ye in rags and rotten shoes,
You dirty-bearded, blocking up the way?

THE PILGRIMS :
We are the Pilgrims, master; we shall go
Always a little further: it may be
Beyond the last blue mountain barred with snow,
Across that angry or that glimmering sea,
White on a throne or guarded in a cave
There lives a prophet who can understand
Why men were born: but surely we are brave,
Who make the Golden Journey to Samarkand.

THE CHIEF MERCHANT :
We gnaw the nail of hurry. Master, away!

ONE OF THE WOMEN :
O turn your eyes to where your children stand.
Is not Bagdad the beautiful? O stay!

THE MERCHANTS in chorus :
We take the Golden Road to Samarkand.

AN OLD MAN :
Have you not girls and garlands in your homes,
Eunuchs and Syrian boys at your command?
Seek not excess: God hateth him who roams!

THE MERCHANTS :
We make the Golden Journey to Samarkand.

A PILGRIM WITH A BEAUTIFUL VOICE :
Sweet to ride forth at evening from the wells
When shadows pass gigantic on the sand,
And softly through the silence beat the bells
Along the Golden Road to Samarkand.

A MERCHANT :
We travel not for trafficking alone:
By hotter winds our fiery hearts are fanned:
For lust of knowing what should not be known
We make the Golden Journey to Samarkand.

THE MASTER OF THE CARAVAN :
Open the gate, O watchman of the night!

THE WATCHMAN :
Ho, travellers, I open. For what land
Leave you the dim-moon city of delight?

THE MERCHANTS with a shout
We make the Golden Journey to Samarkand.

The Caravan passes through the gate

THE WATCHMAN consoling the women
What would ye, ladies? It was ever thus.
Men are unwise and curiously planned.

A WOMAN :
They have their dreams, and do not think of us.

VOICES OF THE CARAVAN : in the distance, singing
We make the Golden Journey to Samarkand.
2012 Oct 02 04:40
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Aemma
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Post: #38
RE: Post a Poem
Something by our most beloved French Canadian poet, Émile Nelligan. I do wish that more of his works were translated and readily available for free on the internet. Hélas....

LA ROMANCE DU VIN
by Émile Nelligan (1879-1941)

Tout se mêle en un vif éclat de gaieté verte
O le beau soir de mai ! Tous les oiseaux en choeur,
Ainsi que les espoirs naguère à mon coeur,
Modulent leur prélude à ma croisée ouverte.

O le beau soir de mai ! le joyeux soir de mai !
Un orgue au loin éclate en froides mélopées;
Et les rayons, ainsi que de pourpres épées,
Percent le coeur du jour qui se meurt parfumé.

Je suis gai! je suis gai ! Dans le cristal qui chante,
Verse, verse le vin ! verse encore et toujours,
Que je puisse oublier la tristesse des jours,
Dans le dédain que j'ai de la foule méchante !

Je suis gai ! je suis gai ! Vive le vin et l'Art !...
J'ai le rêve de faire aussi des vers célèbres,
Des vers qui gémiront les musiques funèbres
Des vents d'automne au loin passant dans le brouillard.

C'est le règne du rire amer et de la rage
De se savoir poète et objet du mépris,
De se savoir un coeur et de n'être compris
Que par le clair de lune et les grands soirs d'orage !

Femmes ! je bois à vous qui riez du chemin
Ou l'Idéal m'appelle en ouvrant ses bras roses;
Je bois à vous surtout, hommes aux fronts moroses
Qui dédaignez ma vie et repoussez ma main !

Pendant que tout l'azur s'étoile dans la gloire,
Et qu'un rythme s'entonne au renouveau doré,
Sur le jour expirant je n'ai donc pas pleuré,
Moi qui marche à tâtons dans ma jeunesse noire !

Je suis gai ! je suis gai ! Vive le soir de mai !
Je suis follement gai, sans être pourtant ivre !...
Serait-ce que je suis enfin heureux de vivre;
Enfin mon coeur est-il guéri d'avoir aimé ?

Les cloches ont chanté; le vent du soir odore...
Et pendant que le vin ruisselle à joyeux flots,
Je suis gai, si gai, dans mon rire sonore,
Oh ! si gai, que j'ai peur d'éclater en sanglots !

Song of Wine
Translation by
Fred Cogswell (1917-2004)
Fresh in joy, life, light - all things coincide,
This fine May eve ! like living hopes that once
Were in my heart, the choiring birds announce
Their prelude to my window open wide.

O fine May eve! O happy eve of May!
A distant organ beats out frigid chords;
And long shafts of sun, like crimson swords,
Cuts to the heart the scent of dying day.

How gay, how glad am I ! Pour out, pour out
Once more the wine into the chiming glass
That I may lose the pain of days which pass
In scorn for all the wicked human rout.

How glad am I ! My wine and art be blest!
I, too, have dreamt of making poetry
That lives, of poems which sound the exequy
For autumn winds that passing far-off mist.

The bitter laugh of rage is now good form,
And I, a poet, must eat scorn for food.
I have a heart but am not understood
Save by the moonlight and the great nights of storm.

Woman ! I drink to you who mock the path
where the rose-dream calls with arms flung wide;
I drink, too, to you men with brows of pride
Who first refuse my hand then scorn my life!

When the starry sky becomes one glorious roof,
And when a hymn resounds for golden spring,
I do not weep for all the days' calm going,
Who wary grope within my own black youth.

How glad am I ! May eve all eves above.
Not drunk but desperately glad am I !...
Has living grown at last to be a joy?
Has my heart, too, been healed of my sick love?

The clocks have struck and the wind smells of night
Now the wine gurgles as I pour it out.
So glad am I that I laugh and shout
I fear I shall break down and sob outright.

~Be the Virtuous Man or Woman you are meant to be.~
2012 Oct 02 18:30
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Phlegethon
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RE: Post a Poem
WANDRERS NACHTLIED

Der du von dem Himmel bist,
Alles Leid und Schmerzen stillst,
Den, der doppelt elend ist,
Doppelt mit Erquickung fullest,
Ach, ich bin des Treibens müde,
Was soll all der Schmerz und Lust?
Süßer Friede, Komm, ach komm in meine Brust!


EIN GLEICHES

Über allen Gipfeln
Ist Ruh,
In allen Wipfeln
Spürest du
Kaum einen Hauch,
Die Vögelein schweigen im Walde.
Warte nur, balde
Ruhest du auch.


WANDERER'S NIGHT-SONGS (AFTER GOETHE) - H. W. Longfellow

Thou that from the heavens art,
Every pain and sorrow stillest,
And the doubly wretched heart
Doubly with refreshment fillest,
I am weary with contending!
Why this rapture and unrest?
Peace descending
Come ah, come into my breast!

O'er all the hill-tops
Is quiet now,
In all the tree-tops
Hearest thou
Hardly a breath;
The birds are asleep in the trees:
Wait; soon like these
Thou too shalt rest.


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Oct 03 17:49
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RE: Post a Poem





Tristesses de la lune

Ce soir, la lune rêve avec plus de paresse;
Ainsi qu'une beauté, sur de nombreux coussins,
Qui d'une main distraite et légère caresse
Avant de s'endormir le contour de ses seins,
Sur le dos satiné des molles avalanches,
Mourante, elle se livre aux longues pâmoisons,
Et promène ses yeux sur les visions blanches
Qui montent dans l'azur comme des floraisons.
Quand parfois sur ce globe, en sa langueur oisive,
Elle laisse filer une larme furtive,
Un poète pieux, ennemi du sommeil,
Dans le creux de sa main prend cette larme pâle,
Aux reflets irisés comme un fragment d'opale,
Et la met dans son coeur loin des yeux du soleil.


— Charles Baudelaire, Fleurs du mal (1857)


Sadness of the Moon

Tonight the moon dreams with more indolence,
Like a lovely woman on a bed of cushions
Who fondles with a light and listless hand
The contour of her breasts before falling asleep;
On the satiny back of the billowing clouds,
Languishing, she lets herself fall into long swoons
And casts her eyes over the white phantoms
That rise in the azure like blossoming flowers.
When, in her lazy listlessness,
She sometimes sheds a furtive tear upon this globe,
A pious poet, enemy of sleep,
In the hollow of his hand catches this pale tear,
With the iridescent reflections of opal,
And hides it in his heart afar from the sun's eyes.


— William Aggeler, The Flowers of Evil (Fresno, CA: Academy Library Guild, 1954)


Sorrow of the Moon

More drowsy dreams the moon tonight. She rests
Like a proud beauty on heaped cushions pressing,
With light and absent-minded touch caressing,
Before she sleeps, the contour of her breasts.
On satin-shimmering, downy avalanches
She dies from swoon to swoon in languid change,
And lets her eyes on snowy visions range
That in the azure rise like flowering branches.
When sometimes to this earth her languor calm
Lets streak a stealthy tear, a pious poet,
The enemy of sleep, in his cupped palm,
Takes this pale tear, of liquid opal spun
With rainbow lights, deep in his heart to stow it
Far from the staring eyeballs of the Sun.


— Roy Campbell, Poems of Baudelaire (New York: Pantheon Books, 1952)

The Sadness of the Moon

Tonight the moon, by languorous memories obsessed,
Lies pensive and awake: a sleepless beauty amid
The tossed and multitudinous cushions of her bed,
Caressing with an abstracted hand the curve of her breast.
Surrendered to her deep sadness as to a lover, for hours
She lolls in the bright luxurious disarray of the sky —
Haggard, entranced — and watches the small clouds float by
Uncurling indolently in the blue air like flowers.
When now and then upon this planet she lets fall,
Out of her idleness and sorrow, a secret tear,
Some poet — an enemy of slumber, musing apart —
Catches in his cupped hands the unearthly tribute, all
Fiery and iridescent like an opal's sphere,
And hides it from the sun for ever in his heart.

— George Dillon, Flowers of Evil (NY: Harper and Brothers, 1936)


Tristesses de la lune

the moon tonight, more indolently dreaming,
as on a pillowed bed, a woman seems,
caressing with a hand distraught and gleaming,
her soft curved bosom, ere she sinks in dreams.
against a snowy satin avalanche
she lies entranced and drowned in swooning hours,
her gaze upon the visions born to blanch
those far blue depths with ever-blossoming flowers.
and when in some soft languorous interval,
earthward, she lets a stealthy tear-drop fall,
a poet, foe to slumber, toiling on,
with reverent hollow hand receives the pearl,
where shimmering opalescences unfurl,
and shields it in his heart, far from the sun.

— Lewis Piaget Shanks, Flowers of Evil (New York: Ives Washburn, 1931)


Not in haunts of marble chill,
Temples drear where ancients trod,—
Nay, in oaks on woody hill
Lives and moves the German God.

2012 Oct 03 19:50
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