[Les plantes et les planètes] / [Plants and planets]

By Robert Marteau Robert Marteau

Translated By John Montague

Les plantes et les planètes
Au même ciel obáissent ;
Du même soleil les bêtes
Et les hommes se nourrissent ;

Et le mátal dans la mine
Couve l'astre minuscule,
Soufre dont la fleur si fine
Vit en chaque corpuscule.

Naines ou gáantes sont
Poudre et bran jetás loin
Qui sans chute ou frein s'en vont
Aux quatre mondes sans coin

Ni angle, d'anges peuplás,
Mais d'autres disent que non,
Dont les mondes envolás
Seraient comme d'un canon,

Par qui par hasard tirá,
L'expansive consáquence,
Et d'aucune intelligence
Le fruit de quel grain tirá.

[Plants and planets]

Plants and planets
Obey the same heaven;
As beasts and men
Are nourished by the same sun;

And the metal in the mine
Warms minute stars,
Sulphurous flowers so delicate
They live in every corpuscule.

Dwarves and giants are   
Powder and dust thrown far
Without fall or check whirl
To the four cornerless, angleless

Worlds, peopled with angels,
But others say not at all.
Their worlds seem   
Fired from a cannon,

Fired by whom by chance,
This expanding consequence,
The fruit of some grapeshot
Without any intelligence.

Source: Poetry (October 2000).


This poem originally appeared in the October 2000 issue of Poetry magazine

Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Nature, Stars, Planets, Heavens


Poetic Terms Imagery, Rhymed Stanza, Mixed

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