Published on Academy of American Poets (https://poets.org)


It Was Going on Five in the Morning

It was going on five in the morning
The ship of steam stretched its chain to shatter the windows
And outside
A glowworm
Lifted Paris like a leaf
It was only a long trembling scream
A scream from the Maternity Hospital nearby
FINIS FOUNDRY FANATIC
But whatever joy escaped in the exhalation of that pain
It seems to me that I was falling for a long time
I still had my fist clenched around a handful of grass
And suddenly that rustle of flowers and needles of ice
Those green eyebrows that shooting-star pendulum
From what depths was the bell actually able to rise again
The hermetic bell
Which nothing last night made me foresee would stop on this landing
The bell whose sides read
Undine
Moving to raise your spearheaded Sagittarius pedal
You had carved the infallible signs
Of my enchantment
With a dagger whose coral handle forks into infinity
So that your blood and mine 
Would become one

Credit


From Andre Breton: Selections edited by Mark Polizzoti. Copyright © 2003. Reprinted by permission of University of California Press. "It Was Going on Five in the Morning" translated by Zack Rogow and Bill Zavatsky. All rights reserved.

Author


André Breton

Andre Breton was born in France in 1896 and worked in psychiatric units during World War I. In 1924 he published the Surrealist Manifesto, which defines surrealism and is considered to be the beginning of the Surrealist Movement. Breton died in 1966.

Date Published: 2003-01-01

Source URL: https://poets.org/poem/it-was-going-five-morning