Poems of Gustavo Adolfo Becquer, IV

Translated from the Spanish by Mason Carnes

        Ah! do not say that, all its treasure spent,
        For lack of subjects mute the lyre has grown:
        Perchance no poets there will be, but still
                              For ever poetry will live.

While the waves enkindled by the kiss of light all palpitate,
While the sun adorns the broken clouds with robes of fire and gold;
While the air bears harmonies and perfumes in its ample lap,
While there is a spring to glad the world, there will be poetry!

While Science strives in vain to find the origin of life,
And in the sea or sky remains unsounded one abyss;
While mankind advancing ever knows not whither trend his steps,
While there is a mystery for man, there will be poetry!

While we feel the soul rejoicing with no laughter from the lips;
While we feel the soul lamenting with no tears to cloud the eye;
While the fiery heart continues battling with the sober head,
While there are remembrances and hopes, there will be poetry!

While there are some eyes reflecting other eyes that look at them,
While a sighing lip remains responsive to a lip that sighs,
While two blended, mingled souls can feel each other in a kiss,
While one beauteous woman still remains, there will be poetry!


From Poems of Gustavo Adolfo Becquer (Kegan Paul, Trench, Trübner & Co., Ltd., 1891) by Gustavo Adolfo Becquer. Translated from the Spanish by Mason Carnes. This poem is in the public domain.