The Balcony by Charles Baudelaire

Oh, Mother of Memories! Mistress of Mistresses!
Oh, thou all my pleasures, oh, thou all my prayers!
Can’st thou remember those luscious caresses,
The charm of the hearth and the sweet evening airs?
Oh, Mother, of Memories, Mistress of Mistresses!

Those evenings illumed by the glow of the coal,
And those roseate nights with their vaporous wings,
How calm was thy breast and how good was thy soul,
‘Twas then we uttered imperishable things,
Those evenings illumed by the glow of the coal.

How lovely the suns on those hot, autumn nights!
How vast were the heavens! and the heart how hale!
As I leaned towards you–oh, my Queen of Delights,
The scent of thy blood I seemed to inhale.
How lovely the sun on those hot, autumn nights!

The shadows of night-time grew dense like a pall,
And deep through the darkness thine eyes I divined,
And I drank of thy breath–oh sweetness, oh gall,
And thy feet in my brotherly hands reclined,
The shadows of Night-time grew dense like a pall.

I know how to call forth those moments so dear,
And to live my Past–laid on thy knees–once more,
For where should I seek for thy beauties but here
In thy langorous heart and thy body so pure?
I know how to call forth those moments so dear.

Those perfumes, those infinite kisses and sighs,
Are they born in some gulf to our plummets denied?
Like rejuvenate suns that mount up to the skies,
That first have been cleansed in the depths of the tide;
Oh, perfumes! oh, infinite kisses and sighs!

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