curated by Adam Fitzgerald

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Clock of Secret Weddings

On the side of evil:

Why must I always fall asleep
Why must the night devour me

I am unable to go without a halo
It hurts to be without a crown

But when I sleep soft chimes sound
My indolence hangs on their rope

I dream of the heart of my dead youth.


Then time gives birth to a new order
Order of fall with twisted foliage

I am born I die I open and close the door
I am at the heart of what dies from blooming

I do not know how to leave from where I start off
Nor how to see any part of my sad future

I decorate my sheets with my twisted scowl.

On the side of good:

Over the delicate sky enormous clouds
Broke the flow of monotonous dreams

And when the flaming storm made a face
I was breathing darkness I was taking form

I conceived the earth that I worship
I was like everything that I name

I fortified the forgiving earth.


A thousand songs of grapes and apples
Bedecked all words with fruit

A thousand voyages of animals and men
Sought out the day on the earth without limits

Night kissed the lips of dawn
The flowers were opening under the frantic light

I was radiance I was weakness and strength.

by Paul Éluard (1895 – 1952)
Translated from the French by Lisa Lubasch