When forty years of rain and flood were ended, Earthís rivers found their long-forsaken shores; As waterlines receded and descended, A thing called love came quietly ashore, And then dissolved, its particles suspended Throughout the atmosphere forevermore. And lone eccentrics - such men still exist - Deeply inhale that sweet and wondrous mix, Expecting neither punishment nor pleasure, Suspecting nothing of the love they breathe; Their breaths grow ragged, their emotions seethe To match anotherís syncopated measure. Only spirits must, like ships at sea, Long remain adrift before they see How "I love" unfailingly implies That "I breathe", and more, that "Iím alive." And wanderings will weary their existence: Love is a broad and formidable land. Ordeals of pain and solitude and distance She will of her enamored knights demand; And ever sterner will be her insistence, And ever more insistent her command, But loversí fervor will not be deterred: They plead to fate, their very lives profferred, In payment every happiness foreswearing, To let their bond invisibly extend, To guard and to protect and to defend The magic thread connecting them from tearing. And the winds will sweep them off their feet, Intoxicate and resurrect from death. Else existence would not be complete - Loveless one has neither life nor breath. Alas, too many choke on love and perish, Oblivious to counsel and to sense, And gossips tell their stories with a relish, Forgetting blood had charted the events; But we will mourn, remember them and cherish, With candles lit in somber reverence. Their souls will walk in fields beneath the sun; Their voices come eternally as one; With gasps of bliss, in one exalted instance, They finally will meet with bated breath Upon a shaky bridge or narrow path Among the fragile crossings fo existence. Verdant meadows, boundless skies above: Such a gift to lovers I would give! Let them sing with joy and let them love, For they who love are those who truly live.
© Eugenia Fuchs. Translation, 2010