rondeaux

Sometimes this [or here],
sometimes that [or there],
high and low,
more and more
everything comes and goes.

Mad men we will see,
of high status,
of low status,
Sometimes this, etc.

The old times
have already run away,
the new ones have come,
que dea! que dea!
Sometimes this, etc.

Charles d’Orléans

melancholy

Bluish shadows. O you dark eyes
Which gaze long upon me gliding by.
Sounds of a guitar gently accompany autumn
In the garden, dissolved in brown fluids.
Death’s grave darkling hour is prepared
By nymphen hands; decaying lips
Suck at redbreasts and into black fluids
The sun-youth’s damp locks glide.

Georg Trakl

L’invitation au voyage

My sister, my child
Imagine how sweet
To live there as lovers do!
To kiss as we choose
To love and to die
In that land resembling you!
The misty suns
Of shifting skies
To my spirit are as dear
As the evasions
Of your eyes
That shine behind their tears.

There, all is order and leisure,
Luxury, beauty, and pleasure.

The tables would glow
With the luster of years
To ornament our room.
The rarest of blooms
Would mingle their scents
With amber’s vague perfume.
The ceilings, rich
The mirrors, deep—
The splendour of the East—
All whisper there
To the silent soul
Her sweet familiar speech.

There, all is order and leisure,
Luxury, beauty, and pleasure.

And these canals*
Bear ships at rest,
Although in a wandering mood;
To gratify
Your least desire
They have sailed around the world.
The setting suns
En robe the fields
The canals, the entire town
With hyacinth, gold;
The world falls asleep
In a warmly glowing gown.

There, all is order and leisure,
Luxury, beauty, and pleasure.

Charles Baudelaire

lyrica poema

Some say a host of cavalry, others of infantry,
and others of ships,
is the most beautiful thing on the black earth,
but I say it is whatsoever a person loves.
It is perfectly easy to make this understood by everyone:
for she who far surpassed mankind in beauty, Helen,
left her most noble husband and went sailing off to Troy with no thought at all!
for her child or dear parents, but (love) led her astray . . . lightly . . . and she has reminded me now of Anactoria who is not here;
I would rather see her lovely walk and the bright sparkle of her face
than the Lydians’chariots and armed infantry…

Sappho

erotica II

Calamity and conflagration! Strife!
Elissus has attained the time of life,
Sixteen, that’s made for love, and he has all
The adolescent graces great and small:
A honeyed voice, a mouth that’s sweet to kiss,
And an accommodating orifice.
But, “Look, don’t touch!” he tells me. What a fate!
I’ll lie awake all night and—meditate.

Scythinus

soleils couchants

Spilled through the meadow by
An enfeebled dawn,
The melancholy
Of setting suns.
Melancholy
Rocks my heart to oblivion
With sweet melody
Amid setting suns.
And strange dreams
Like suns, setting,
Ruddy phantoms
Over shores, passing
Unceasingly, passing like some
Huge suns, like them
Over shores, setting.

Paul Verlaine