Paul Eluard

(14 December 1895 – 18 November 1952 / Saint Denis / Paris)

To Live


We both have our hands to give
Take mine I shall lead you afar

I have lived several times my face hasw changed
With every threshold I have crossed and every hand clasped Familial springtime was reborn
Keeping for itself and for me its perishable snow
Death and the betrothed
The future with five fingers clenched and letting go

My age always gave me
New reasons for living through others
For having the blood of man other's heart in mine

Oh the lucid fellow I was and that I am
Before the pallor of frail blind girls
Lovelier than the delicate worn moon so fair
By the reflection of life's ways
A trail of moss anf trees
Of mist and morning dew
Of the young body which does not rise alone
To its place on earth
Wind cold and rain cradle it
Summer makes a man of it

Presesence is my virtue in each visible hand
Only death is solitude
From delight to fury from fury to clarity
I make myself whole through all beings
Through all weather on the earth and in the clouds
Through the passing seasons I am young
And strong for having lived
I am young my blood rises over my ruins

We have our hands to entwine Nothing can ever seduce better
Tahn our bonding to each other a forest
Returning earth to sky and the sky to night

To the night which prepares an unending day.

Submitted: Friday, January 03, 2003

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