Sunday, November 15, 2015

Frensh Poetry / Poesía Francesa

Paul Éluard


Twenty-Four Poems


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Translated by A. S. Kline © 2001 All Rights Reserved
This work may be freely reproduced, stored, and transmitted, electronically or otherwise, for any non-commercial purpose.



I speak to you over cities

I speak to you over plains

My mouth is against your ear

The two sides of the walls face
my voice which acknowledges you.

I speak to you of eternity.

O cities memories of cities
cities draped with our desires
cities early and late
cities strong cities intimate
stripped of all their makers
their thinkers their phantoms

Landscape ruled by emerald
live living ever-living
the wheat of the sky on our earth
nourishes my voice I dream and cry
I laugh and dream between the flames
between the clusters of sunlight

And over my body your body extends
the layer of its clear mirror.


Easy and beautiful under

your eyelids
As the meeting of pleasure
Dance and the rest

I spoke the fever

The best reason for fire
That you might be pale and luminous
A thousand fruitful poses
A thousand ravaged embraces
Repeated move to erase themselves
You grow dark you unveil yourself
A mask you
control it

It deeply resembles you
And you seem nothing but lovelier naked
Naked in shadow and dazzlingly naked
Like a sky shivering with flashes of lightning
You reveal yourself to you
To reveal yourself to others

Talking of Power and Love

Between all my torments between death and self

Between my despair and the reason for living
There is injustice and this evil of men
That I cannot accept there is my anger

There are the blood-coloured fighters of Spain
There are the sky-coloured fighters of Greece
The bread the blood the sky and the right to hope
For all the innocents who hate evil

The light is always close to dying
Life always ready to become earth
But spring is reborn that is never done with
A bud lifts from dark and the warmth settles

And the warmth will have the right of the selfish
Their atrophied senses will not resist
I hear the fire talk lightly of coolness
I hear a man speak what he has not known

You who were my flesh’s sensitive conscience
You I love forever you who made me
You will not tolerate oppression or injury
You’ll sing in dream of earthly happiness
You’ll dream of freedom and I’ll continue you

The Beloved

She is standing on my eyelids

And her hair is wound in mine,
She has the form of my hands,
She has the colour of my eyes,
She is swallowed by my shadow
Like a stone against the sky.

Her eyes are always open
And will not let me sleep.
Her dreams in broad daylight
Make the suns evaporate
Make me laugh, cry and laugh,
Speak with nothing to say.

Max Ernst

In one corner agile incest

Turns round the virginity of a little dress
In one corner sky released
leaves balls of white on the spines of storm.

In one corner bright with all the eyes
One awaits the fish of anguish.
In one corner the car of summer’s greenery
gloriously motionless forever.

In the glow of youth
lamps lit too late.
The first one shows her breasts that kill the insects that are red.


For the splendour of the day of happinesses in the air

To live the taste of colours easily
To enjoy loves so as to laugh
To open eyes at the final moment

She has every willingness.


After years of wisdom

During which the world was transparent as a needle
Was it cooing about something else?
After having vied with returned favours squandered treasure
More than a red lip with a red tip
And more than a white leg with a white foot
Where then do we think we are?

Nearer To Us

Run and run towards deliverance

And find and gather everything
Deliverance and riches
Run so quickly the thread breaks
With the sound a great bird makes
A flag always soared beyond

Open Door

Life is truly kind

Come to me, if I go to you it’s a game,
The angels of bouquets grant the flowers a change of hue.

The Immediate Life

What’s become of you why this white hair and pink

Why this forehead these eyes rent apart heart-rending
The great misunderstanding of the marriage of radium
Solitude chases me with its rancour.

Lovely And Lifelike

A face at the end of the day

A cradle in day’s dead leaves
A bouquet of naked rain
Every ray of sun hidden
Every fount of founts in the depths of the water
Every mirror of mirrors broken
A face in the scales of silence
A pebble among other pebbles
For the leaves last glimmers of day
A face like all the forgotten faces.

The Season of Loves

By the road of ways

In the three-part shadow of troubled sleep
I come to you the double the multiple
as like you as the era of deltas.

Your head is as tiny as mine
The nearby sea reigns with spring
Over the summers of your fragile form
And here one burns bundles of ermine.

In the wandering transparency
of your noble face
these floating animals are wonderful
I envy their candour their inexperience
Your inexperience on the bed of waters
Finds the road of love without bowing

By the road of ways
and without the talisman that reveals
your laughter at the crowd of women
and your tears no one wants.

As Far As My Eye Can See In My Body’s Senses

All the trees all their branches all of their leaves

The grass at the foot of the rocks and the houses en masse
Far off the sea that your eye bathes
These images of day after day
The vices the virtues so imperfect
The transparency of men passing among them by chance
And passing women breathed by your elegant obstinacies
Your obsessions in a heart of lead on virgin lips
The vices the virtues so imperfect
The likeness of looks of permission with eyes you conquer
The confusion of bodies wearinesses ardours
The imitation of words attitudes ideas
The vices the virtues so imperfect

Love is man incomplete

Barely Disfigured

Adieu Tristesse

Bonjour Tristesse
Farewell Sadness
Hello Sadness
You are inscribed in the lines on the ceiling
You are inscribed in the eyes that I love
You are not poverty absolutely
Since the poorest of lips denounce you
Ah with a smile
Bonjour Tristesse
Love of kind bodies
Power of love
From which kindness rises
Like a bodiless monster
Unattached head
Sadness beautiful face.



In A New Night

Woman I’ve lived with

Woman I live with
Woman I’ll live with
Always the same
You need a red cloak
Red gloves a red mask
And dark stockings
The reasons the proofs
Of seeing you quite naked
Nudity pure O ready finery

Breasts O my heart

Fertile Eyes

Fertile Eyes

No one can know me more
More than you know me

Your eyes in which we sleep
The two of them
Have cast a spell on my male orbs
Greater than worldly nights

Your eyes where I voyage
Have given the road-signs
Directions detached from the earth

In your eyes those that show us
Our infinite solitude
Is no more than they think exists

No one can know me more
More than you know me.

I Said It To You

I said it to you for the clouds

I said it to you for the tree of the sea
For each wave for the birds in the leaves
For the pebbles of sound
For familiar hands
For the eye that becomes landscape or face
And sleep returns it the heaven of its colour
For all that night drank
For the network of roads
For the open window for a bare forehead
I said it to you for your thoughts for your words
Every caress every trust survives.

It’s The Sweet Law Of Men

It’s the sweet law of men

They make wine from grapes
They make fire from coal
They make men from kisses

It’s the true law of men
Kept intact despite
the misery and war
despite danger of death

It’s the warm law of men
To change water to light
Dream to reality
Enemies to friends

A law old and new
That perfects itself
From the child’s heart’s depths
To reason’s heights.

The Curve Of Your Eyes

The curve of your eyes embraces my heart

A ring of sweetness and dance
halo of time, sure nocturnal cradle,
And if I no longer know all I have lived through
It’s that your eyes have not always been mine.

Leaves of day and moss of dew,
Reeds of breeze, smiles perfumed,
Wings covering the world of light,
Boats charged with sky and sea,
Hunters of sound and sources of colour

Perfume enclosed by a covey of dawns
that beds forever on the straw of stars,
As the day depends on innocence
The whole world depends on your pure eyes
And all my blood flows under their sight.


On my notebooks from school

On my desk and the trees
On the sand on the snow
I write your name

On every page read
On all the white sheets
Stone blood paper or ash
I write your name

On the golden images
On the soldier’s weapons
On the crowns of kings
I write your name

On the jungle the desert
The nests and the bushes
On the echo of childhood
I write your name

On the wonder of nights
On the white bread of days
On the seasons engaged
I write your name

On all my blue rags
On the pond mildewed sun
On the lake living moon
I write your name

On the fields the horizon
The wings of the birds
On the windmill of shadows
I write your name

On each breath of the dawn
On the ships on the sea
On the mountain demented
I write your name

On the foam of the clouds
On the sweat of the storm
On dark insipid rain
I write your name

On the glittering forms
On the bells of colour
On physical truth
I write your name

On the wakened paths
On the opened ways
On the scattered places
I write your name

On the lamp that gives light
On the lamp that is drowned
On my house reunited
I write your name

On the bisected fruit
Of my mirror and room
On my bed’s empty shell
I write your name

On my dog greedy tender
On his listening ears
On his awkward paws
I write your name

On the sill of my door
On familiar things
On the fire’s sacred stream
I write your name

On all flesh that’s in tune
On the brows of my friends
On each hand that extends
I write your name

On the glass of surprises
On lips that attend
High over the silence
I write your name

On my ravaged refuges
On my fallen lighthouses
On the walls of my boredom
I write your name

On passionless absence
On naked solitude
On the marches of death
I write your name

On health that’s regained
On danger that’s past
On hope without memories
I write your name

By the power of the word
I regain my life
I was born to know you
And to name you


Ring Of Peace

I have passed the doors of coldness

The doors of my bitterness
To come and kiss your lips

City reduced to a room
Where the absurd tide of evil
leaves a reassuring foam

Ring of peace I have only you
You teach me again what it is
To be human when I renounce

Knowing whether I have fellow creatures


I am in front of this feminine land

Like a child in front of the fire
Smiling vaguely with tears in my eyes
In front of this land where all moves in me
Where mirrors mist where mirrors clear
Reflecting two nude bodies season on season

I’ve so many reasons to lose myself
On this road-less earth under horizon-less skies
Good reasons I ignored yesterday
And I’ll never ever forget
Good keys of gazes keys their own daughters
in front of this land where nature is mine

In front of the fire the first fire
Good mistress reason
Identified star
On earth under sky in and out of my heart
Second bud first green leaf
That the sea covers with sails
And the sun finally coming to us

I am in front of this feminine land
Like a branch in the fire.

Our Life

We’ll not reach the goal one by one but in pairs

We know in pairs we will know all about us
We’ll love everything our children will smile
At the dark history or mourn alone

Uninterrupted Poetry

From the sea to the source

From mountain to plain
Runs the phantom of life
The foul shadow of death
But between us
A dawn of ardent flesh is born
And exact good
that sets the earth in order
We advance with calm step
And nature salutes us
The day embodies our colours
Fire our eyes the sea our union
And all living resemble us
All the living we love
Imaginary the others
Wrong and defined by their birth
But we must struggle against them
They live by dagger blows
They speak like a broken chair
Their lips tremble with joy
At the echo of leaden bells
At the muteness of dark gold
A lone heart not a heart
A lone heart all the hearts
And the bodies every star
In a sky filled with stars
In a career in movement
Of light and of glances
Our weight shines on the earth
Glaze of desire
To sing of human shores
For you the living I love
And for all those that we love
That have no desire but to love
I’ll end truly by barring the road
Afloat with enforced dreams
I’ll end truly by finding myself
We’ll take possession of earth

Index of First Lines