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Charles Baudelaire
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To a Passer-By (À une passante)
by Charles Baudelaire (1861); translated by Cyril Scott (1909).

Around me thundered the deafening noise of the street,
In mourning apparel, portraying majestic distress,
With queenly fingers, just lifting the hem of her dress,
A stately woman passed by with hurrying feet.

Agile and noble, with limbs of perfect poise.
Ah, how I drank, thrilled through like a Being insane,
In her look, a dark sky, from whence springs forth the hurricane,
There lay but the sweetness that charms, and the joy that destroys.

A flash then the night. . . . O loveliness fugitive!
Whose glance has so suddenly caused me again to live,
Shall I not see you again till this life is o'er!

Elsewhere, far away . . . too late, perhaps never more,
For I know not whither you fly, nor you, where I go,
O soul that I would have loved, and that you know!


PAGE 2 OF 2.

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AUTHOR: Charles Baudelaire (1861); translated by Cyril Scott (1909).
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