twilight ballad

This is the hour of my bleak thoughts.
My Demon sleeps.
The red Demon
of my hellish mirth
sleeps in the gloomy twilight
of this mind of mine.
I smoke…
Desperately, intensely,
I smoke. Always!
Always! Always! Always!
I would like to think, to write, to sing…
But my Demon sleeps
The red Demon of my hellish mirth
sleeps in the gloomy twilight
of this mind of mine.
And no thoughts come…
Nor even laughter and curses!
This is the dark hour
of my black melancholy…

Renzo Novatore

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ballade of the women of Paris

Though women skill in speech unfold
’Neath Tuscan or Venetian sky,
Yea, even when they’re waxen old
On confidential errands fly;
Let Roman dames or Lombards try,
Or Genoese, support to draw,
Bring Piedmontese, Savoyards nigh,
There’s none to match a Paris jaw!

The Naples dames, like doctors, hold
Discourses, and are never shy;
The Germans cackle, we are told,
The Prussian women shrilly cry;
But search all Greece or Hungary,
Or Gypsies of no land or law,
Castile, or Spain, and squeeze them dry,
There’s none to match a Paris jaw!

All tongues of Swiss or Breton mould
Or from Toulouse or Gascony,
Two wives of Petit-Pont would scold
Them dumb, and all Lorraine defy
With England, Calais hold thereby,
(Behold this list of names with awe!)
Valenciennes too and Picardy,
There’s none to match a Paris jaw!

Prince, Paris ladies claim the high
Reward of speech without a flaw;
Italian lips in vain may vie
There’s none to match a Paris jaw

François Villon