Arrows of pain torment me,
Keeping me from sleep.
Painful pinches disturb me,
Keeping me from dreams,
Thought and prayer. While,
Little night noises interrupt my suffering:
Slight crackings of the log in the fireplace,
The nimble tappings of the rain
Striking on the window pane,
The humming of the wind in the chilled yew-tree,
The rumbling of an airplane in the stars’ preserve.
The hammering of the clock forging the hour
On the anvil of time … And
The dance of the mice in the cellar,
While the orange cat purrs,
—That sluggard Bilu, —dozing, lost
In his sleep and his dreams,
In his mind constantly the image of his beloved,
Gwennig, the elegant little cat,
As lovely as an ermine.
Translated by Lenora Timm