Chant d’automne

by tiresomemoi

Leaves, Bd Raspail – 17 Novembre 2014Leaves, Bvd Raspail


It’s not really that cold but summer seems a very long time ago.


Bientôt nous plongerons dans les froides ténèbres;
Adieu, vive clarté de nos étés trop courts!

— The first two lines of Charles Baudelaire’s Chant d’automne*

Soon we shall plunge into the cold darkness;
Farewell, vivid brightness of our short-lived summers! 

— William Aggeler, The Flowers of Evil (Fresno, CA: Academy Library Guild, 1954)

Soon into frozen shades, like leaves, we’ll tumble.
Adieu, short summer’s blaze, that shone to mock

— Roy Campbell, Poems of Baudelaire (New York: Pantheon Books, 1952)

soon shall we plunge ‘neath winter’s icy pall;
farewell, bright fires of too-brief July!

— Lewis Piaget Shanks, Flowers of Evil (New York: Ives Washburn, 1931)


*The full poem can be found here along with three English translations.