I. I have brought to art (1921)
I sit here, and I dream.
I have brought to art
Sensation and desire;
With some half-noticed images,
Faces and lines,
And uncertain memories.
Let me surrender myself to art.
For art can give shape
To any form of beauty;
And almost imperceptibly
It can fulfill one’s life,
While composing impressions,
And arranging the days.
II. In this place (1929)
This is my home, the heart of my neighborhood,
The houses and the cafés of my quarter,
These are the buildings that stand all around me,
And the streets that I wander every day;
In this place, year after year.
I have recreated these surroundings
In my joy and in my sorrow:
Through a lifetime of experience,
And in abundant detail.
This place has been entirely transformed
Into pure emotion, for me.
III. The morning sea (1915)
Let me stand here.
Let me enjoy this view for a while.
The morning sea
And the cloudless sky;
The brilliant blue
Against the pale yellow shore;
These colors are utterly beautiful,
As they shimmer in the sunlight.
Let me stand here.
Let me pretend that I can take this all in.
(I will tell you honestly
That this is what I saw when I arrived.)
And I will not be distracted
By my daydreams,
By my memories,
And those images of my past delights.
IV. An epic in the heart (1886)
Everything within you
Seems to smile at me kindly,
And in the mirror of your eyes,
I can see the reflection of my own joy.
Stay here, my light,
For I have not yet told you
Even half of the things
That seize my heart with passion
And rush to my lips
After a single glance from you.
If you do not want me to speak,
Then do not try to charm me
With your words of love and adoration.
It is enough for me that you are here,
So I can tell you that I want you,
So I can touch you, and in the morning,
So I can breathe in the air that you exhale;
And if you find my attention
Just too much to take,
Then stay here anyway, and let me look at you.
V. Beside an open window (1896)
On this clear autumn night,
Beside an open window,
For hour after hour, I remain,
In the perfect, voluptuous quiet.
The rain drips lightly from the leaves.
A sigh from this delicate universe
Resounds within my own vulnerable nature;
It is a sweet sigh, and rises up like a blessing.
My window looks out upon an unfamiliar world.
A murmuring spring evokes memories
That are fragrant and indescribable to me.
Near my window, a pair of wings flutters by;
The dewy spirits of autumn
Approach and encircle me,
And in the purest of languages, they speak.
I begin to feel a vague and widespread hope;
And in the sacred silence of creation,
My ears encounter faint and distant melodies,
I hear a crystalline, mystical music,
From the chorus of the stars.