The Sun

A poem by Charles Baudelaire

Through all the district's length, where from the shacks
Hang shutters for concealing secret acts,
When shafts of sunlight strike with doubled heat
On towns and fields, on rooftops on the wheat,
I practise my quaint swordsmWhip alone,
Stumbling on words as over paving stones,
Sniffing in corners all the risks of rhyme,
To find a verse I'd dreamt of a long time.

This foster-father, fighter of chlorosis,
Wakes in the fields the worms as well as roses;
He sends our cares in vapour to the skies,
And fills our minds, with honey fills the hives,
Gives crippled men a new view of the world,
And makes them gay and gentle as young girls,
Commands the crops to grow, and nourishes
Them, in that heart that always flourishes!

When, poet-like, he comes to town awhile,
He lends a grace to things that are most vile,
And simply, like a king, he makes the rounds
Of all the hospitals, the palace grounds.

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