day 31: beddy bye

Night Blooming Jasmine

by Giovanni Pascoli
translated by Geoffrey Brock

And in the hour when blooms unfurl

thoughts of my loved ones come to me.

The moths of evening whirl

around the snowball tree.

Nothing now shouts or sings;

one house only whispers, then hushes.

Nestlings sleep beneath wings,

like eyes beneath their lashes.

From open calyces there flows

a ripe strawberry scent, in waves.

A lamp in the house glows.

Grasses are born on graves.

A late bee sighs, back from its tours

and no cell vacant any more.

The hen and her cheeping stars

cross their threshing floor.

All through the night the flowers flare,

scent flowing and catching the wind.

The lamp now climbs the stair,

shines from above, is dimmed…

It’s dawn: the petals, slightly worn,

close up again—each bud to brood,

in its soft, secret urn,

on some yet-nameless good.

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