Charles Baudelaire

Autumn Sonnet

They say to me, your eyes, clear as crystal: "For you, bizarre lover, what is my merit then?" - Be charming and be still! My heart, which all things irk, Except the candor of the animals of old, Does not wish to reveal its black secret to you, Whose lulling hands invite me to long sleep, Nor its somber legend written with flame. I hate passion; intelligence makes me suffer! Let us love each other sweetly. Tenebrous Love, Ambushed in his shelter, stretches his fatal bow. I know all the weapons of his old arsenal: Crime, horror, and madness! - pale marguerite! Are you not, like me, an autumnal sun, O my Marguerite, so white and so cold? Translated by - William Aggeler Autumn Song They ask me - thy crystalline eyes, so acute, "Odd lover - why am I to thee so dear?" - Be sweet and keep silent, my heart, which is sear, For all, save the rude and untutored brute, Is loth its infernal depths to reveal, And its dissolute motto engraven with fire, Oh charmer! whose arms endless slumber inspire! I abominate passion and wit makes me ill. So let us love gently. Within his retreat, Foreboding, Love seeks for his arrows a prey, I know all the arms of his battle array. Delirium and loathing - O pale Marguerite! Like me, art thou not an autumnal ray, Alas my so white, my so cold Marguerite! Translated by - Cyril Scott Autumn Sonnet Your eyes like crystal ask me, clear and mute, "in me, strange lover, what do you admire?" Be lovely: hush: my heart, whom all things tire Except the candour of the primal brute, Would hide from you the secret burning it And its black legend written out in fire, O soother of the sleep that I respire! Passion I hate, and I am hurt by wit. Let us love gently. In his lair laid low, Ambushed in shades, Love strings his fatal bow. I know his ancient arsenal complete, Crime, horror, lunacy - O my pale daisy! Are we not suns in Autumn, silver-hazy, O my so white, so snow-cold Marguerite? Translated by - Roy Campbell

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