Tuesday, March 07, 2006

and you think I'm strange...

"Vowels" -- Arthur Rimbaud

A Black, E white, I red, U green, O blue :
vowels, I shall tell, one day, of your mysterious origins :

A, black velvety jacket of brilliant flies
Which buzz around cruel smells,
Gulfs of shadow ;

E, whiteness of vapours and of tents,
Lances of proud glaciers, white kings,
shivers of cow-parsley ;

I, purples, spat blood, smile of beautiful lips
In anger or in the raptures of penitence;

U, waves, divine shudderings of viridian seas,
The peace of pastures dotted with animals,
the peace of the furrows
Which alchemy prints on broad studious foreheads ;

O, sublime Trumpet full of
strange piercing sounds,
Silences crossed by Worlds and by Angels :
O the Omega, the violet ray of Her Eyes !

Translated by Oliver Bernard :
Arthur Rimbaud,
Collected Poems (1962)