The Good Pedestrian Godfrey (A Haiku-Length Poem - by Paul Claudel)

The good pedestrian Godfrey

The good pedestrian Godfrey
Sleeps, alas, beneath this cold marble stone.
They say he was within his rights,
But he is just as dead
As if he had been in the wrong.



Paul Claudel 2 July 1932




[Rendered into English by O. Á. Christie

used as subtitles available under the 'closed captions' menu 
for the video: 'Paul Claudel's 'Le bon piéton Godefroi' read by OÁC' / Music: St James Infirmary]




And here is the ORIGINAL TEXT:



Le bon piéton Godefroi…



Le bon piéton Godefroi
Dort, hélas, sous ce marbre froid.
Il était, dit-on, dans son droit,
Mais il est tout aussi mort
Que s'il eût été dans son tort.

The Good Pedestrian Godfrey (A Haiku-Length Poem - by Paul Claudel)
Saturday, June 20, 2015
Topic(s) of this poem: empathy,epitaph,human condition,people,warning
POET'S NOTES ABOUT THE POEM
2 July 1932
This haiku-long poem can be found in "Supplément aux oeuvres complètes, Volume 3".

It should be noted that five years earlier Paul Claudel had written a collection of poems of similar length entitled "Cent Phrases pour éventails" (= 百 sen 帖 [Hyaku sen chō]) .
They were written between June 1926 and January 1927, while Paul Claudel was the ambassador of France in Japan.
Calligraphies by Ikuma Arishima [有 島 生 馬]
Tokyo: Koshiba,1927
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