Stuart Merrill

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I believe Beauty is the condition of the perfect life

Stuart Merrill (August 1, 1863 in Hempstead, New York – December 1, 1915 in Versailles, France) was an American poet who wrote in French.


  • Fume l'encens, veille l'amour,
    Dans son lit bleu la vierge est morte;
    Couve le feu, tombe le jour,
    L'Ange, mes soeurs, frappe à la porte.
    • Translation: Incense smokes, and love takes care,
      In her blue bed the virgin died;
      The fire broods, the day falls,
      The Angel, sisters, knocks on the door.
      • "La Mystérieuse Chanson"
  • Sonore immensité des mers de l’Harmonie,
    Où les rêves, vaisseaux pris d’un vaste frisson,
    Voguent vers l’inconnu, leur voilure infinie
    Claquant aven angoisse aux bourrasques du Son!
    • Translation: Sonorous immensity of the seas of Harmony
      Where dreams like ships that shake in the profound,
      Voyage to the unknown, their sails bent to infinity,
      Billowing with anguish in the gusts of Sound.
      • "Pendant qu’elle chantait", from Les gammes, translated by Catherine Perry and Henry Weinfield in The White Tomb: Selected Writing, Talisman House, 1999.
  • I believe Beauty is the condition of the perfect life, just as important as Virtue and Truth.
    • "Credo"


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