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by Charles Baudelaire, translated to English by John Collings Squire

What wilt thou say, poor lonely soul, to-night?
What wilt thou say, erst withered heart of mine,
To the most kind, most beautiful, most bright,
Who hath renewed thee with her glance divine?

Put we our pride to singing of her praise!
Happy the thralls who know her gentle yoke,
Angelic perfume floats along her ways,
And she hath clad us in a shining cloak!

Out in the night and in the solitude
Out in the street and in the multitude
Her phantom dances torch-like in the air;

And sometimes speaks she: “Beauty, thou shalt choose
Thine only love, for love of me who am fair;
I am Madonna, Guardian-Angel, Muse!”

Blossoms of Evil (1857)
by Charles Baudelaire - Translated by John Collings Squire

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