by Mihai Eminescu (1850-1889)
The Bible tells us about Samson, that while he slept for an hour,
His woman cut off his hair, and she took all his power.
So his enemies caught him, tied him, and his eyes they poked out,
As proof of what kind of a heart is inside the bosom of a “skirt.”
Young man, when full of dreams some woman you chase,
While the moon glows in the alley beaming a golden fence.
And it tints the green shade with strange strips,
Don’t forget that the lady has tiny brains, long dress, and hot lips.
You get drunk of the delight of a great summer dream you have on your hands.
Ask her… For instance she will tell you about ribbons and trends,
While your own heart beats the sacred rhythm of a verse…
When the young woman smartly leans her head on your shoulder,
Think of Delilah: if you’re smart and if you are bolder.
She is funny like a child. One can see that she’s pretty.
And she has dimples on her cheeks, when she’s witty.
She has dimples on the corner of her cruel mouth,
Also at every finger of her hand or in any other spot;
She isn’t tall, nor is she short.
She isn’t thin, but she is well built.
So you have what to hold close. She’s just right to make love to.
All she says is right. All she does: to her it looks better than you do.
Anything she wears looks lovely on her, as it should.
As her speech is nice. She is liked for the way she looks so good.
Her speech says: “go away! ” Her smile says: “come to me! ”
As she strolls, she seemingly recalls a song. She acts arrogantly.
Seems that she asks for a kiss. And that she’s still lazy.
She rises from her heels to reach to your mouth.
Only a heart of a woman has that odd warmth.
And she hands it out to you with a kiss…
How much happiness do you think you’d find in her embrace?
You’d cheer up seeing the blush on her cheeks, and in her attraction.
She has temper; she’s a queen. And like an aide, you are her fan.
You have a hunch that when you look deeply in her eye, you learn to be a man.
And that life is dear, and that death too, is pricey.
And with a sheer and awesome pain, you are angry.
You might see in her the world of the queen of your thoughts.
And so, she would appear to you prettier than Venus Anadyomene.
You are confused at the time when you dream about her teary eye.
You can’t remember how the hours have passed by.
You like her increasingly, as the days slip away.
Such dreams you have. Don’t you see from her stare?
The smile on her face is a routine and a glare.
Her beauty is a spare for this world.
And she harms your soul, and it can’t be helped.
Your arched lyre that buzzes out from seven strings,
In vain it picks in its rhythm your miserable cries.
You shall have in your eye a great dash of lukewarm lies,
How in winter, flowers of ice pop up on windows.
When in your heart is summer, you ask her unsuccessfully:
'Please allow me to offer my tears to your ingenuity.”
She can’t even know, that it is not you who desires her…
A demon lives in you. He gets thirsty for her sweet pleasure.
And that demon laughs, and he cries. He isn’t able to hear his own cry.
And that he wants her, so he can understand himself finally.
And he struggles like a sculptor without one hand.
And he sighs like a maestro who goes deaf at a top-split-second—
Before he could get to the best of the music that is out of this world.
He listened to the rotation and fall, from the time he was born.
She doesn’t know that the demon likes to have her statue’s imitation
—The one with a gloomy eye, and with a voice like that of a pigeon.
And he doesn’t ask her to be scarified on a high altar,
The way in ancient times, virgin women who posed as models for a sculptor,
Were killed as soon as their likeness was chiselled as a goddess, in stone.
That demon might come to terms with self… And he could be born again.
Consumed by his own fire, he might know himself next.
And overwhelmed by his desires and by his insatiable love and greed,
He could come up like Horatio, with an Adonic verse.
The springs’ murmur, the forest’s humid shade, the ever more stars,
All these might exert a pull on the incredible dream he has.
And with his taste, he might bring back to life the zest of the ancient-times.
In that odd split-second, when he is lucky, he might think fast.
And with a deep desire he might look at her, and fall besotted.
And from her young eye, he’ll timidly implore her mercy,
Melting with his kiss the cold look from her eye.
And forever he’ll enjoy holding her at his chest.
Even if she was made of stone, in such bliss she could still melt.
When he’ll fall on his knees and talk kindly to her,
Being drowned by joy, he might be about to lose his temper.
And from his flare-ups of desire, he’ll love only her.
By accepting your proposal, and trying to know you better,
Does a woman really know that she can give you all you crave for?
Could she be satisfied with your fancy dreams, and with your love?
With courtesan smiles with pious eyes, and pretending she knows it,
Any woman is glad to have the body of the lasting beauty on this planet.
Tell her that among the flowers she is a woman.
And that she is a flower amongst the women.
She will love it. However, make her choose between three men
When every one of them says that he loves her. She can’t decide.
You’ll see how swiftly she becomes convinced.
With your heart and mind, you may be a barrier
Behind which she may get a young suitor,
Who, enters with small steps, like an actor,
And he leaves behind him a trace of gossip and perfume.
He fools her with his monocle, buttoned like a flower blossom.
It is a crafty deed in spirit and in substance.
Perhaps all four of the match’s kings suit her nevertheless.
And she places them one next to the other in the room of her heart.
And when the lady flirts with her suave bed-eye,
She shares her words when with a knave, when with an old king.
It is no wonder that her hunch might be wrong.
And she could mistake her king of spades for a scoundrel…
Since she will talk to your demonic passion, in a monastic style.
While if the king of spades appears, she gets confident.
Crafty feelings of love fill her indifferent eye. She is suddenly exuberant.
She sits with one leg on the other. This gap in her shrewdness is hilarious.
To dream that the truth or other thing in nature might change a blade of grass
This is the brake that we put to truthfulness.
And so when full of dreams, a woman you chase,
While on the alley, the moon glows a golden fence,
And it tints the green shade with its fantastic strips,
Don’t forget that the lady has long dress and short mind.
You get drunk of the delight of a great summer dream you have in your hand
Ask her… For instance she will tell you about fashion and ribbons,
While your own heart beats the sacred rhythm of a verse…
When the young woman smartly leans her head on your shoulder
Think of Delilah, if you’re smart and you are stronger.
When you see her face of stone, and that she doesn’t feel sorry or have pity,
She is Delilah. If you have strength and you are smart, get out-of-the-way.
(1890, February the 1st.)
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