Spleen IV by Charles Pierre Baudelaire

I like the poem because the poet states what he senses and feels and visualises his feelings before the emptiness expands in his imagination… and the images are very beautiful in the expression, and the feelings are equally beautiful. he is drawing in his imagination with the feelings and mapping them with the feelings so that people can see and feel what he sees and feels.

I like it also because I am the same style of person, obsessed by the destructive beauty in my imagination – the images scraped by the feelings travelling in my imagination, I feel I am floating over my head and I am taken away from the logic of reason…

These have been my feelings, hard to describe in words…

here the poem is:

Spleen IV

When the low and heavy sky presses like a lid
On the groaning heart a prey to slow cares,
And when from a horizon holding the whole orb
There is cast at us a dark sky more sad than night;

When earth is changed to a damp dungeon,

Where Hope, like a bat,
Flees beating the walls with its timorous wings,
And knocking its head on the rotting ceilings;

When the rain spreads out vast trails
Like the bars of a huge prison,
And when, like sordid spiders, silent people stretch

Threads to the depths of our brains,

Suddenly the bells jump furiously
And hurl to the sky a horrible shriek,
Like some wandering landless spirits
Starting an obstinate complaint.

— And long hearses, with no drums, no music,

File slowly through my soul: Hope,
Conquered, cries, and despotic atrocious Agony
Plants on my bent skull its flag of black.


Quand le ciel bas et lourd pèse comme un couvercle
Sur l’esprit gémissant en proie aux longs ennuis,

Et que de l’horizon embrassant tout le cercle
II nous verse un jour noir plus triste que les nuits;

Quand la terre est changée en un cachot humide,
Où l’Espérance, comme une chauve-souris,
S’en va battant les murs de son aile timide

Et se cognant la tête à des plafonds pourris;

Quand la pluie étalant ses immenses traînées
D’une vaste prison imite les barreaux,
Et qu’un peuple muet d’infâmes araignées
Vient tendre ses filets au fond de nos cerveaux,

Des cloches tout à coup sautent avec furie
Et lancent vers le ciel un affreux hurlement,
Ainsi que des esprits errants et sans patrie
Qui se mettent à geindre opiniâtrement.

— Et de longs corbillards, sans tambours ni musique,

Défilent lentement dans mon âme; l’Espoir,
Vaincu, pleure, et l’Angoisse atroce, despotique,
Sur mon crâne incliné plante son drapeau noir.

忧郁 四
波德莱尔 著






About Jun Wang
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