The Burial, Translation of Paul Verlaine’s sonnet : L’Enterrement
I know nothing as gay as a burial !
The grave-digger who sings with his pickaxe in bright thrill
The church bells from afar reverberating with their svelte trille
The priest in a white surplice whose joyous prayers hardly in denial
The chorus boy with his voice fresh as a girl’s,
And when at the bottom of the hole, all warm and snug,
The coffin nestles in with the tumbling in soft tug
Of earth making the corpse’s eiderdown, the lucky devil’s
All this looks to me quite charming forsooth !
And then, all those, stuffed plump in tail coats’ sheath,
Mourners whose noses redden while receiving tips
And then, the proper concise speeches stuffed with advice rare
And then, with bulging hearts and glorious foreheads glistening
Hail ! The sparkling heirs !
© T. Wignesan – Paris, 2013