Beauty (Baudelaire)

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Beauty / La Beauté
by Charles Baudelaire, translated by Frank Pearce Sturm
NOTE: No. 17 in the 1861 edition of "The Flowers of Evil" / "Les Fleurs du mal". Translated by F. P. Sturm (1879 - 1942), published 1906. Source: The Flowers of Evil, ed. Marthiel and Jackson Mathews, New Directions edition, 1989.


Beauty


I am as lovely as a dream in stone;
My breast on which each finds his death in turn
Inspires the poet with a love as lone
As everlasting clay, and as taciturn.

Swan-white of heart, a sphinx no mortal knows,
My throne is in the heaven’s azure deep;
I hate all movement that disturbs my pose;
I smile not ever, neither do I weep.

Before my monumental attitudes,
Taken from the proudest plastic arts,
My poets pray in austere studious moods,

For I, to fold enchantment round their hearts,
Have pools of light where beauty flames and dies,
The placid mirrors of my luminous eyes.


The note on the translation:

This is a translation and has a separate copyright status from the original text. The license for the translation applies to this edition only.
Original:
This work published before January 1, 1923 is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.
 
Translation:
This work is in the public domain in the United States because it was published before January 1, 1923.

The author died in 1942, so this work is also in the public domain in countries and areas where the copyright term is the author's life plus 70 years or less. This work may also be in the public domain in countries and areas with longer native copyright terms that apply the rule of the shorter term to foreign works.