Baudelaire, Charles: The Enemy (L'ennemi in English)
The Enemy (English)
I think of my gone youth as of a stormy sky
Infrequently transpierced by a benignant sun;
Tempest and hail have done their work; and what have I? —
How many fruits in my torn garden? — scarcely one.
And now that I approach the autumn of my mind,
And must reclaim once more the inundated earth —
Washed into stony trenches deep as graves I find
I wield the rake and hoe, asking, "What is it worth?"
Who can assure me, these new flowers for which I toil
Will find in the disturbed and reconstructed soil
That mystic aliment on which alone they thrive?
Oh, anguish, anguish! Time eats up all things alive;
And that unseen, dark Enemy, upon the spilled
Bright blood we could not spare, battens, and is fulfilled.