Je suis le Ténébreux, – le Veuf, – l’Inconsolé,
Le Prince d’Aquitaine à la Tour abolie :
Ma seule Étoile est morte, – et mon luth constellé
Porte le Soleil noir de la Mélancolie.
Dans la nuit du Tombeau, Toi qui m’as consolé,
Rends-moi le Pausilippe et la mer d’Italie,
La fleur qui plaisait tant à mon cœur désolé,
Et la treille où le Pampre à la Rose s’allie.
Suis-je Amour ou Phébus ?... Lusignan ou Biron ?
Mon front est rouge encor du baiser de la Reine ;
J’ai rêvé dans la Grotte où nage la sirène...
Et j’ai deux fois vainqueur traversé l’Achéron :
Modulant tour à tour sur la lyre d’Orphée
Les soupirs de la Sainte et les cris de la Fée.
This poem is jolly awesome. I had a two hour conversation with Dr. Dupree just about this this afternoon. It's very hard to understand at first, but that's because it's almost Symbolist in its use of imagery that stands as its own explanation rather than being explained directly (as the lesser Romantics were wont to explain their imagery, or I suppose as the much more admirable Metaphysicals would use an extended simile that had nonetheless a clear object). And if you don't speak French as a native in the first place, and are thus relatively unfamiliar with French folklore or the nuances/connotations of words, it's particularly hard, because missing the full meaning of a single image causes your interpretation of the rest of the images to be very unsatisfactory and incomplete, so inter-dependent are they all.
It's quite late right now, and I have Junior poet stuff to think about as well as French symbolists, so I'll provide a translation and explication tomorrow. I'm quite bursting with excitement to do this, actually, because this poem is so marvelous, and practically no English speakers know about it.