Charles Baudelaire

Cloudy Sky

One would say that your gaze was veiled with mist; Your mysterious eyes (are they blue, gray or green?) Alternately tender, dreamy, cruel, Reflect the indolence and pallor of the sky. You call to mind those days, white, soft, and mild, That make enchanted hearts burst into tears, When, shaken by a mysterious, wracking pain, The nerves, too wide-awake, jeer at the sleeping mind. You resemble at times those gorgeous horizons That the sun sets ablaze in the seasons of mist... How resplendent you are, landscape drenched with rain, Aflame with rays that fall from a cloudy sky! O dangerous woman, O alluring climates! Will I also adore your snow and your hoar-frost, And can I draw from your implacable winter Pleasures keener than iron or ice? Translated by - William Aggeler Ciel brouille thine eyes are veiled with vapour opaline; - those eyes of mystery! — (azure, grey or green?) cruel or soft in turn as dreams devise, reflect the languor of the pallid skies. thou'rt like these autumn days of silver-grey whose magic melts the soul to tears: a day when by a secret evil inly torn the quivering nerves laugh drowsy wits to scorn. thou art as fair as distant dales, where suns of misty seasons leave their benisons... how dazzling rich the dewy woodlands lie flaming in sunlight from a ruffled sky! o fateful woman! sky that lures and lours! and shall I love thy snow, its frosty hours, and learn to clutch from winter's iron gyves new pleasure keen as cloven ice or knives? Translated by - Lewis Piaget Shanks Overcast Sky Meseemeth thy glance, soft enshrouded with dew, Thy mysterious eyes (are they grey, green or blue?), Alternately cruel, and tender, and shy, Reflect both the languor and calm of the sky. Thou recallest those white days - with shadows caressed, Engendering tears from th' enraptured breast, When racked by an anguish unfathomed that weeps, The nerves, too awake, jibe the spirit that sleeps. At times - thou art like those horizons divine, Where the suns of the nebulous seasons decline; How resplendent art thou - O pasturage vast, Illumed by the beams of a sky overcast! O! dangerous dame - oh seductive clime! As well, will I love both thy snow and thy rime, And shall I know how from the frosts to entice Delights that are keener than iron and ice? Translated by - Cyril Scott Misty Sky One would have thought your eyes were veiled in haze Strange eyes! (Grey, green, or azure is their gaze?) It seems they would reflect, in each renewal, The changing skies, dull, dreamy, fond, or cruel. You know those days both warm and hazy, which Melt into tears the hearts that they bewitch: And when the nerves, uneasy to control, Too-wide awake, upbraid the sleeping soul. You, too, resemble such a lit horizon As suns of misty seasons now bedizen... As you shine out, a landscape fresh with rain With misty sunbeams sparkling on the plain. Dangerous girl, seductive as the weather! Shall I adore your snows and frosts together? In your relentless winter shall I feel A kiss more sharp than that of ice and steel? Translated by - Roy Campbell

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