Salente in fasci verso un cielo affastellato un paradiso di fiamma
wait, and draw near, gaze again, and are silent.
Your flesh awkward and heavy sleeps torpidly
in primordial dream. Whore…
Who called you to life…and from where?
From some acrid Tyrrhenian port,
from a song-drenched fair in Tuscany?
Or did your mother wallow in burning
sands beneath the sirocco?
Immensity engraves wonder
on your savage face of a sphinx
the teeming breath of life
stirs your sombre mane
tragically like a lioness’s,
and you gaze at the sacrilegious blond angel
you don’t love, who doesn’t love you, and who suffers
from you, and who kisses you wearily.
The enchanting rose-brown girl,
adorned with that golden head of hair:
and those shining brown eyes whose imperious grace
enchanted the roseate freshness of morning:
she whom you followed in the air
the fresh incarnation of morning dream:
who used to wander when dreams
and perfumes veiled the stars
(those you loved to gaze at beyond the gates,
the stars the pallid night):
who used to pass by silently
and white as a flight of doves
is surely dead: did you not know?
It was the night
of the fair of perfidious Babel
soaring in piles to a sky heaped high a paradise of flame
with loud and grotesque hoots
and tinkling angelic bells
and shrieks and whores’ voices,
and Ophelian pantomime
distilled from the humble tears of electric lamps.
A common little song has died
and left me here with a heart in pain
and sent me wandering lovelessly
to deposit my heart at every door:
with her who was never born yet died
and left to me a loveless heart:
and yet carries off my heart in pain:
to deposit my heart at every door.