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English language
Limba Romana
An ideal hidden in the night of an age that now no longer is,
An age when men in legend thought, and spoke their thoughts in poet's wise,
Oh, but I see you, hear you, know you, sweet and youthful promises
Born of a world with other stars, with other gods and other skies.

Venus, warmly gleaming marble, with eyes of stone that brightly shine,
With arms as smooth and gentle as the dream of some high poet king,
A goddess and a woman fair that in one body do combine,
A woman of whose beauty still even to the present day we sing.

Rafael, astray in dreams, as though in night's star-sparkling air,
His spirit drunken with their rays and spring's eternal wonder seen,
Espied your face, and dreaming heaven with fragrant moonlit gardens fair
Did set you in the stars to reign, of all God's angels you the queen.

Upon an empty canvas he the sweet Madonna then did paint
With gleaming diadem of stars, a virgin smile lit in her eyes,
A pallid ray upon her cheek; a woman yet an angel spell,
For in our visions do we see angels all in woman's guise.

And thus I, who in the night of a life of poetry lonely dwell,
Espied you, o barren woman, without soul and without fire
And of you have made an angel, sweet as secret magic spell,
When across a desert world luck and longing do conspire.

I saw your face corruption show, by lust's hot hunger drawn and pale,
I saw your lips depraved and bruised by passion's blinding violence,
And over your white shoulders bare I threw the poet's misty veil
And on your pallid cheeks I set a girlish glow of innocence.

I gave the radiance that lights with sparkling fairy
The sacred mien of praying nun, of pious child celestial;
Out of a demon made a saint, out of discord harmony,
And lit your heart impure a virgin brilliance matinal.

Disillusion all is gone, the veil of dream is sadly torn,
Your frosty bloodless lips have touched to wakefulness my sleeping brow
And I have learned to gaze on you with endless pity and with scorn
My love for you, o demon child, grown cold and quite extinguished now.

I see you now a bacchant who a plaited myrtle wreath does wear
That you did from the pious head of some good martyr sinfully steal;
A martyr whose sweet virgin soul was saintly as fervent prayer,
While your delirious heart instead through endless bacchanal does reel.

As Rafael on canvas bare did the Madonna's portrait paint
With gleaming diadem of stars and eyes lit with a virgin smile,
So I a pallid mortal girl transformed into a deathless saint,
A girl with barren empty soul and body soiled, depraved and vile.
You weep dear child? But don't you know that in your will the power lies
With but a single pleading glance my yearning heart again to bind?
I kneel down humbly at your feet and seek for pardon in your eyes,
I kiss your hands again, again and beg that I forgiveness find.

No, dry your eyes, dear one, don't weep, my accusations do not heed
For they were naught but empty lies, unfounded, wicked and unfair.
Why, were you demon, so much love would make you holy then indeed,
And I adore this demon saint with big blue eyes and golden hair.

Translated by
Corneliu M. Popescu
Ideal pierdut in noaptea unei lumi ce nu mai este,
Lume ce gandea in basme si vorbea in poezii,
O! te vad, te-aud, te cuget, tanara si dulce veste
Dintr-un cer cu alte stele cu-alte raiuri, cu alti zei.

Venere, marmura calda, ochi de piatra ce scanteie,
Brat molatic ca gandirea unui imparat poet,
Tu ai fost divinizarea frumusetii de femeie,
A femeiei, ce si astazi tot frumoasa o revad.

Rafael, pierdut in visuri ca-ntr-o noapte instelata,
Suflet imbatat de raze si d-eterne primaveri,
Te-a vazut si-a visat raiul cu gradini imbalsamate,
Te-a vazut plutind regina printre ingerii din cer

Si-a creat pe panza goala pe Madona dumnezeie,
Cu diadema de stele, cu surasul bland, vergin,
Fata pala-n raze blonde, chip de inger, dar femeie,
Caci femeia-i prototipul ingerilor din senin.

Astef eu, pierdut in noaptea unei vieti de poezie,
Te-am vazut, femeie stearpa, fara suflet, fara foc,
Si-am facut din tine-un inger, bland ca ziua de magie,
Cand in viata pustiita ride-o raza de noroc.

Am vazut fata ta pala de o bolnava betie,
Buza ta invinetita de-al coruptiei muscat,
Si-am zvarlit asupra-ti, crudo, valul alb de poezie,
Si paloarei tale raza inocentei eu i-am dat.

Ti-am dat palidele raze ce-nconjoara cu magie
Fruntea ingerului-geniu, ingerului ideal,
Din demon facui o santa, dintr-un chicot, simfonie,
Din ochirile-ti murdare, ochiu-aurorei matinal.

Dar azi valul cade, crudo! dismetit din visuri sece,
Fruntea mea este trezita de al buzei tale-nghet
Si privesc la tine, demon, si amoru-mi stins si rece
Ma invata cum asupra-ti eu sa caut cu dispret!

Tu imi pari ca o bacanta, ce-a luat cu-nselaciune
De pe-o frunte de fecioara mirtul verde de martir,
O fecioar-a carei suflet era sant ca rugaciunea,
Pe cand inima bacantei e spasmodic, lung delir.

O, cum Rafael creat-a pe Madona dumnezeie,
Cu diadema-i de stele, cu surasul bland, vergin,
Eu facut-am zeitate dintr-o palida femeie,
Cu inima stearpa, rece si cu suflet de venin!

Plangi, copila? - C-o privire umeda si rugatoare
Poti din nou zdrobi si frange apostat-inima mea?
La picioare-ti cad si-ti caut in ochi negri-adanci ca marea,
Si sarut a tale mane, si-i intreb de poti ierta.

Sterge-ti ochii, nu mai plange!...A fost cruda-nvinuirea,
A fost cruda si nedreapta, fara razem, fara fond.
Suflete! de-ai fi chiar demon, tu esti santa prin iubire,
Si ador pe acet demon cu ochi mari, cu parul blond.

(1870, 15 aprilie)

Mihail Eminescu
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