by Stéphane Mallarmé (1842 - 1898)
Translation © by Charles Hopkins (1952 - 2007)

Apparition
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): CHI ENG GER
La lune s'attristait. Des séraphins en pleurs
Rêvant, l'archet aux doigts, dans le calme des fleurs
Vaporeuses, tiraient de mourantes violes
De blancs sanglots glissant sur l'azur des corolles.
-- C'était le jour béni de ton premier baiser.
Ma songerie aimant à me martyriser
S'enivrait savamment du parfum [de tristesse]1
Que même sans regret et sans déboire laisse
La cueillaison d'un Rêve au cœur qui l'a cueilli.
J'errais donc, l'œil rivé sur le pavé vieilli
Quand avec du soleil aux cheveux, dans la rue
Et dans le soir, tu m'es en riant apparue
Et j'ai cru voir la fée au chapeau de clarté
Qui jadis sur mes beaux sommeils d'enfant gâté
Passait, laissant toujours de ses mains mal fermées
Neiger de blancs bouquets d'étoiles parfumées.

View original text (without footnotes)

First published in the revue Lutèce, November 24-30, 1883.

1 K. Sorabji: "de la tristesse"

Authorship

Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • CHI Chinese (中文) (Yen-Chiang Che) , "幻影", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Laura Claycomb) (Peter Grunberg) , "Apparition", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Charles Hopkins) , "Apparition", written 2002, first published 2002, copyright ©, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • ENG English (Charles Hopkins) , "Apparition", written c2005, copyright ©, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Richard von Schaukal) , "Erscheinung"
  • POL Polish (Polski) (Bronisława Ostrowska) , "Zjawa", Kraków, J. Mortkowicz, first published 1911


Research team for this text: Auditorium du Louvre , Poom Andrew Pipatjarasgit [Guest Editor]

Text added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Last modified: 2019-07-18 00:03:54
Line count: 16
Word count: 124

Apparition
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
The moon was saddened. Dreaming of weeping seraphs,
Bow in hand, amid the stillness of gossamer flowers,
The faint tones they drew from their viols,
White sobs gliding over the blossom’s azure heart
– It was the blessed day of your first kiss.
My reverie, taking pleasure in my pain,
Knowingly intoxicated me with the fragrance of sadness
That itself[,] with neither sorrow nor bitterness[,]
Abandons the harvesting of a Dream to the heart that has gleaned it.
I was wandering[,] then, my eye fixed on the ancient cobbles
When[,] with the sun in your hair, and in the evening light of the street,
You appeared to me[,] laughing,
And I thought I had seen the fairy[,] its head garlanded with light[,]
Who all that time ago passed over the enchanted array of nameless desires and unheard-of delights.

Confirmed with an original Microsoft Word Document provided by Alistair Hinton.


Authorship

Based on

Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

    [ None yet in the database ]

Another version of this text exists in the database.


Researcher for this text: Poom Andrew Pipatjarasgit [Guest Editor]

Text added to the website: 2018-08-03 00:00:00
Last modified: 2019-10-21 09:30:34
Line count: 14
Word count: 138