Spleen of the Coffin-Lid Sky (Spleen)

When the sky’s a coffin lid that’s pressing down
On my spirit, buried with with its prized ennui
The ring of the horizon changes round
To a dark day bleak as any night could be

When the world’s a dungeon lined with dripping stones
And Hope’s a bat that’s fluttering around
Smacking granite walls that crush its flesh and bones
Bleeding out, it suffers, twitching on the ground

When the streaks of rain paint the window panes
Like the steel-barred sills of prison cells
Dimpled spiders strain, spinning webs in our brains
Work their loathsome skills as their egg-sacs swell

While carillons ring out their furious boasts
Roaring clanging howling tunes up to the skies
The highways are jammed with sad wandering ghosts
Reaching nobody with their impotent cries

Silent hearses hauling fresh-harvested souls
Ignore my curses–Pay no heed they’re full
Leave my slouched corpse to languish. Through the kingdom they roll
As the Queen of Anguish plants her flag in my skull.

–Translated by T-Roy Martin

[Original poem here.]


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