“Son joyeux, importun, d’un clavecin sonore.” —PÉTRUS BOREL
The keyboard, over which two slim hands float,
Shines vaguely in the twilight pink and gray,
Whilst with a sound like wings, note after note
Takes flight to form a pensive little lay
That strays, discreet and charming, faint, remote,
About the room where perfumes of Her stray.
What is this sudden quiet cradling me
To that dim ditty’s dreamy rise and fall?
What do you want with me, pale melody?
What is it that you want, ghost musical,
That fades toward the window waveringly,
A little open on the garden small?
Translated from the French by Gertrude Hall