Thursday, July 19, 2012

the broken bell - charles baudelaire

The Broken Bell 
by Charles Baudelaire (tr. Wallace Fowlie)

It is bitter and sweet, during winter nights,
To listen, near the fire which crackles and smokes,
To the distant memories slowly rising
At the noise of chimes singing in the fog.

Happy is the bell with the vigorous throat
Which, despite its age, alert and strong,
Faithfully sends forth its religious cry,
Like an old soldier standing sentinel under the tent!

My soul is cracked, and when in its boredom
It wishes to fill the cold air of night with its songs,
It often comes about that its weakened voice
Resembles the thick rattle of a wounded man forgotten
On the edge of a lake of blood, under a great pile of the
And who dies, without moving, after tremendous efforts.

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