Charles Baudelaire


I am fair, O mortals! like a dream carved in stone, And my breast where each one in turn has bruised himself Is made to inspire in the poet a love As eternal and silent as matter. On a throne in the sky, a mysterious sphinx, I join a heart of snow to the whiteness of swans; I hate movement for it displaces lines, And never do I weep and never do I laugh. Poets, before my grandiose poses, Which I seem to assume from the proudest statues, Will consume their lives in austere study; For I have, to enchant those submissive lovers, Pure mirrors that make all things more beautiful: My eyes, my large, wide eyes of eternal brightness! Translated by - William Aggeler La Beaute fair as a dream in stone I loom afar - mortals! — with dazzling breast where, bruised in turn all poets fall in silence, doomed to burn with love eternal as the atoms are. white as a swan I throne with heart of snow in azure space, a sphynx that none divine, no hateful motion mars my lovely line, nor tears nor laughter shall I ever know. and poets, lured by this magnificence - this grandeur proud as Parian monuments — toil all their days like martyrs in a spell; lovers bewitched are they, for I possess pure mirrors harbouring worlds of loveliness: my wide, wide eyes where fires eternal dwell! Translated by - Lewis Piaget Shanks Beauty I arn lovely, O mortals, like a dream of stone, And my bosom, where each one gets bruised in turn, To inspire the love of a poet is prone, Like matter eternally silent and stern. As an unfathomed sphinx, enthroned by the Nile, My heart a swan's whiteness with granite combines, And I hate every movement, displacing the lines, And never I weep and never I smile. The poets in front of mine attitudes fine (Which the proudest of monuments seem to implant), To studies profound all their moments assign, For I have all these docile swains to enchant - Two mirrors, which Beauty in all things ignite: Mine eyes, my large eyes, of eternal Light! Translated by - Cyril Scott Beauty I'm fair, O mortals, as a dream of stone; My breasts whereon, in turn, your wrecks you shatter, Were made to wake in poets' hearts alone A love as indestructible as matter. A sky-throned sphinx, unknown yet, I combine The cygnet's whiteness with a heart of snow. I loathe all movement that displaces line, And neither tears nor laughter do I know. Poets before my postures, which I seem To learn from masterpieces, love to dream And there in austere thought consume their days. I have, these docile lovers to subject, Mirrors that glorify all they reflect - These eyes, great eyes, eternal in their blaze! Translated by - Roy Campbell

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