by Charles Baudelaire
Can we stifle the old, the long Remorse,Which lives, writhes and twists,
And feeds on us as the worm feeds on the dead,
As the maggot on the oak?
Can we stifle the implacable Remorse?
In what flask, in what wine, in what infusion,Shall we drown this old enemy,
Destructive and ravenous as a courtesan,
Patient as an ant?
In what flask? in what wine? in what infusion?
Tell it, beautiful sorceress, yes, tell it, if you can,To this soul distraught with anguish
And like unto the dying man crushed by the wounded,
And who is bruised by the horse's hoof.
Tell it, beautiful sorceress, yes, tell it, if you can,
To this dying man whom the wolf already detectsAnd over whom the vulture is flying,
To this broken soldier! if he must despair
Of having his cross and his tomb;
This poor dying man whom the wolf already detects!
Can one light up a murky black sky?Can one pierce darkness
Thicker than pitch, without morning and evening,
Without stars, without funeral flashes?
Can one light up a murky black sky?
Hope which shines in the windows of the InnIs blown out, and dead forever!
Without moon and rays, one can find where the martyrs
Of a bad road are sheltered!
The Devil has made everything dark in the windows of
Adorable sorceress, do you love the damned?Tell me, do you know what is irremissible?
Do you know Remorse, with the poisoned arrows,
For which our heart serves as target?
Adorable sorceress, do you love the damned?
The Irreparable gnaws with its vile teethOur soul, that pitiful monument,
And often it attacks, like the termite,
The building at the foundation.
The Irreparable gnaws with its vile teeth!
-- I have seen at times, upstage in a shoddy theaterWhich a resonant orchestra enflamed,
A fairy light up in an infernal sky
A miraculous dawn;
I have seen at times upstage in a shoddy theater
A spirit, who was only light, gold and gauzeFling to earth an enormous Satan;
But my heart, which ecstasy never visits,
Is a theater where I wait,
Always in vain, for that Spirit with wings of gauze!