Thursday, 20 November 2014

Down Where The Lonely Poplars Grow - Mihai Eminescu

Down where the lonely poplars grow
          How often have I erred;
My steps that all the neighbours know
          You only have not heard.

Towards your window lighted through
          How oft my gaze has flown;
A world entire my secret knew
          You only have not known.

A word, a murmur of reply
          How often did I pray!
What matters then if I should die,
          Enough to live that day;

To know one hour of tenderness,
          One hour of lovers' night;
To hear you whisper's soft caress
          One hour, then come what might!

Had you but granted me a glance
          That was not filled with scorn,
Out of its shinning radiance
          A new star has been born.

You would have lived through lives untold
          Beyond the ends of time;
O deity with arms so cold,
          O marble form sublime!

An idol of some pagan lore
          As now no more is seen,
Come down to us from times yore,
          From times that long have been.

My worship was of ages gone,
          Sad eyes by faith beguiled,
Each generation handed on
          From father unto child.

But now I very little care
          To walk along that lane,
Nor heed the face I found so fair
          Looks out for me in vain;

For you are like them today
          In bearing and in guise,
And I but look on your display
          With cold and lifeless eyes.

You should have known to value right
          With wondering intent,
And lit your candela at night
          To Love that God had sent.

Mihai Eminescu (1850 - 1889) Romania
Translated by Corneliu M. Popescu

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