And Always

residing on the very same street as Life,
but in a different place.

The hill on which we tread elevates us;
it’s the height we’re at that makes us higher.

To be spiritualized in Night.

That hieratic movement of our clear majestic language,
that expression of ideas in inevitable words,
like water that flows because there’s a slope,

that vocalic marvel in which the sounds are ideal
colours—all of this instinctively seized me like an overwhelming political emotion.

Don’t think it doesn’t hurt me to share these intimate secrets,
all of which are false but which represent true tatters of my pathetic soul.

They become children in the act of acquisition.

We brusquely resolve intellectual problems with our feelings,
either because we’re tired of thinking,
or because we’re afraid to draw conclusions,
or because of an inexplicable need to latch on to something,
or because of a gregarious impulse to return to other people and to life.

And always,
all around us,
the sound of leaves we couldn’t see,
falling we didn’t know where,
lulled the forest to sleep with sadness.

Our abstract intelligence serves only to elaborate systems,
or ideas that are quasi-systems,
which in animals corresponds to lying in the sun.

As I almost always do,
I’m unfit for action,
flustered when I have to take a step or make a move,
tongue-tied when I have to talk to someone,
lacking the inner lucidity needed to enjoy things that require mental effort,

and without the physical stamina to
entertain myself through some merely mechanical labour.

A dreamed sunset is xed and eternal.

—Alfred Wyatt, Daphnis e Chloe