In the park there was an area
of such rich and diverse flowers that it was often referred to as
a garden. Every day it blossomed more and more in the joy of its
beauty and the pretty scent of its perfumes. One evening, a
furious storm tore up and carried away all the flowers. Then a
torrential rain fell, glazing the bruised soil; everything that
it loved the most was gone, torn from its very heart. Now it is
all one to it, but this cold without respite, this senseless deluge,
was the final cruelty. Meanwhile the wind took up the light earth
in handfuls and scattered it all before. Soon the last unyielding
bed was stripped bare, the wind had no hold over it, but the
water did not get across it, and it was such an imprudently
hilly garden that there was nowhere for it to drain off, remaining where it was. And still it fell in torrents, drowning the ransacked
garden in tears. In the morning it was still falling, then
stopped; the garden was now no more than a devastated field
covered by muddy water. But then it all subsided when, at about
five o' clock, the garden felt its waters become calm, pure,
pervaded with infinite ecstasy, pink and blue, divine and sickly,
the afternoon, celestial, came to rest in its bed. And the water
neither veiled it nor stirred it in any way but with all its love
deepened further perhaps its vague and sad look and contained,
retained in its entirety, tenderly embraced its luminous beauty.
And henceforth those who love the vast spectacles of the sky
often go to view them in the pond.
Happy the heart thus stripped of flowers, ransacked, if now full of tears it can also reflect the sky in itself.
An unused fragment
from Plaisirs et les jours, 1893-1895.
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