Derniers Contes

By Edgar Allan Poe

Page 118

plus cher
Encore, et qui lui tenait de plus pres
Encore que tous les autres?

Helas! O rarete
De la chretienne charite.
Sous le soleil!
Oh! Quelle pitie!
Dans toute une cite populeuse
Elle n'avait point de foyer!

Sentiments de soeur, de frere,
De pere, de mere
Avaient change pour elle;
L'amour, par une cruelle clarte,
Etait tombe de son faite;
La providence de Dieu meme
Semblait se detourner.

En face des lampes qui tremblotent
Si loin sur la riviere,
Avec ces mille lumieres,
Qui luisent aux fenetres des maisons
De la mansarde au sous-sol,
Elle se tenait debout, dans l'effarement,
Sans abri pour la nuit.

Le vent glacial de mars
La faisait trembler et frissonner,
Mais non l'arche sombre,
Ou la riviere qui coule noire.
Affolee de l'histoire de la vie,
Heureuse d'affronter le mystere de la mort,
Impatiente d'etre emportee,--
N'importe ou, n'importe ou,
Loin du monde!

Elle se plongea hardiment,--
Sans s'inquieter si, froidement,
L'apre riviere coule--
De sa berge.
Represente-toi cette riviere--penses-y,
Homme dissolu!
Baigne-t-y, bois de ses eaux,
Si tu l'oses!

Prenez-la tendrement;
Soulevez-la avec soin;
Son enveloppe est si frele,
Elle est jeune et si belle!
Avant que ses membres glaces,
Ne soient trop rigidement raidis,
Decemment--tendrement
Aplanissez-les et arrangez-les;
Et ses yeux, fermez-les;
Ces yeux tout grands ouverts sans voir!

Epouvantablement ouverts et regardant
A travers l'impurete fangeuse,
Comme avec le dernier regard
Audacieux du desespoir
Fixe sur l'avenir.

Elle est morte sombrement,
Poussee par l'outrage,
La froide inhumanite,
La brulante folie,
Dans son repos.
Croisez ses mains humblement,
Comme si elle priait en silence,
Sur sa poitrine!
Avouant sa faiblesse,
Sa coupable conduite,
Et abandonnant, avec douceur,
Ses peches a son Sauveur!

Ce poeme n'est pas moins remarquable par sa vigueur que par son
pathetique. La versification, tout en poussant la fantaisie jusqu'au
fantastique, n'en est pas moins admirablement adaptee a la furieuse
demence qui est la these du poeme.

Parmi les petits poemes de lord Byron il en est un qui n'a jamais recu
de la critique les hommages qu'il merite

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Text Comparison with The Works of Edgar Allan Poe — Volume 1

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