Hymn to Satan: A Baudelaire Translation

Baudelaire is a symbol as well as a symptom of the human sickness. This is what happens to a man who has lost his spiritual bearings and expects to find an artificial paradise in drugs, sex and Satanism.  

By CHARLES BAUDELAIRE
Translated from the French
by Lasha Darkmoon

Hymn to Satan

O you among all angels consummate,
God stripped of honor, God betrayed by fate,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

O Prince of exiles, you who suffered wrong,
Who still undaunted rise up ever strong,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

You, lord and master of the occult art,
Wise healer of the harrowed human heart,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

You who, through love, beneath malignant skies,
Give lepers their first taste of paradise,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

You who, in teaching girls to act like whores,
Bring them to rags and syphilitic sores,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

You who, on a tall building’s outer ledge,
Propel the sleepwalker toward the edge,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

You who, to soothe his soul, inspires man
To make the best gunpowder that he can,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

You who, with death, your darling in delusion,
Invented Hope—that beautiful illusion—
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

O refuge of all who in God’s angry eyes
Have failed the entrance test to paradise,
Satan, have pity on my long despair!

PRAYER

Glory and praise to thee, Satan on high
Who reigned in heaven once, yet vanquished lie
In deepest hell now—plunged in dreams and silence!
Grant that my soul rest one day in thy presence:
There where the Tree of Knowledge spreads its shade,
Building a brave new temple round your head.

In the Lost Gardens: A Poem for Easter Sunday

Adveniat  regnum  tuum

IN  THE  LOST  GARDENS

One day, my love, under a kinder sun,
We’ll meet again and savour a new scene:
No sorrows there, and all our labours done,
And swallows gliding through the blue serene.

There in our palace by a lapis sea
We’ll drink a toast with red wine red as blood
To eternal youth and immortality,
For out of evil sprang the primal good.

The Good, the Beautiful, the Always New,
These are the names of the flowers that grow
In the lost gardens where all dreams come true.
All this, my love long gone, one day you’ll know.

Wait and See

“It behoved that there should be sin; but all shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.”
— 
Juliana of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love, c. 1393

Give me
the knock on the door
and the unexpected event.
Give me
the can-I-come-in moment
with the last chance eyes.
Give me
the fortitude to endure
these cruel afflictions.
Give me
the dying life
amid the smiling faces.

Spare me
the testing moment
of the unbearable fate.
Spare me
the stab in the back
on the killer’s balcony
Spare me
the death kiss
on the suicide rooftop.
Spare me
the Black Joker
with his dark cruel eyes.

— Fear not,
wait and see
light spring from darkness,
joy spring from sorrow,
heaven spring from hell,
and the healing of all wounds.
The unexpected event
will come, soon;
and the gordian knot will be broken.
Wait and see
the full moon in the Always Garden
by the holy river.