Quand le vent soupir
Dans la ville de St. Francois,
Le rideau de la fenetre
De la plantation me demontre
Ta forme de perle et de soie
Tandis que les enfants-fantômes
Dansent sur le lit
Et t'encerclent avec leurs rire.
Because I was asked, the translation:
My Gift From The Moon
When the wind sighs
In St. Francisville,
The curtain of the plantation
Window reveals to me
Your form of pearl and silk
While ghost children
Perfumed by oleander
Dance on the bed
And circle you with their laughter.
A twisting tangle of faces
To the left...to the right.
Freight trains and footraces
Trespass everywhere tonight.
Honking, screaming, crying.
A compacting and stifling city
Of lost people selling and buying
Each other. All is seedy and gritty.
And I long to melt, resolve and rise
Until it's not personal, not home
But an anthill, or swarming of flies,
A blink of light, a glint of chrome.
I am vapor, dew of the first morn
And a blush blooms still on the face
I kiss where Time has not yet worn
Your laughing lines, fine like tatted lace.
Where all is fresh with earth and you;
Be thou eve and I'll be sun anew.
Tadpoles are swimming where the water runs red;
Full moon is rising, and there’s blood on your head.
There’s fire reflected in the depths of your eyes.
A woman is screaming and flames lick the skies.
Did you hold up your arms and scream out in shame
For the women and children who died for your name?
The night held its breath and leaned in when you wept,
“For your murder, oh sweet one; my promise is kept.”
A village burns quickly and a man mourns his soul.
Branches sway softly, and a squirrel slips its hole.
Clouds cloak the moon; there’s no rebuke on the rain,
Just silence from heaven, cinders, and pain.
When mercy freed me from your switchblade smile,
At last I wept the loss that coursed like blood
Unstanched, to pale all grasp of truth and guile;
The world so bright, I daubed my eyes with mud.
Now blind, I walk my night through day and light
And curse the birds who sing and warm my face
With calumny so like your serpent bite,
A poison springe to stay my flight of grace.
Shame leads my way, disgrace the only map
To guide the step of fortune’s feckless fool
Up steep ravine above the ocean clap.
She roars my name and calls, “My prize, my jewel!”
I reach for sky and tempt my soul to fly
To rocks that wait to love me by and by.