The day turns cool

Edith Södergran: Poems

I.

The day turns cool towards evening…

Drink the warmth of my hand,

my hand has the warm blood of springtime.

Take my hand, take my white arm,

take the longing of my shoulders…

Wondrous to feel,

one sole night, a night like this,

your heavy head on my breast.

 

II.

You threw the red rose of your love

into my white lap –

in my smoldering hands I squeeze

the red rose of your love that withers soon…

Oh, you cold-eyed ruler,

I accept the crown you hand me,

that bends my head down towards my heart…

 

III.

I saw my master for the first time today,

trembling I recognized him immediately.

Now I already feel his heavy hand

on my light arm…

Where is my chiming virgin-laughter,

my woman-freedom with raised brow?

Now I already feel his firm grasp

around my trembling body,

now I hear reality’s harsh tone

against my fragile, fragile dreams.

 

IV.

You sought a flower

and found a fruit.

You sought a spring

and found a sea.

You sought a woman

and found a soul –

you feel betrayed.