CLEOPATRA


Aleksandr Blok (Алекса́ндр Блок)

The Queen’s Sad Museum
One, two, three years ago it opened.
Drunk and crazy the mob is still crowding …
She waits in the dark grave.

Lies in the sinister box
Glass, neither dead nor alive.
Over her the saliva crowd
Foul words in a low voice.

It stretches lazily
In the eternal sleep to which he had retired …
Slow and smooth, a snake
Bite the wax chest.

Myself, futile and wicked,
With indigo circles,
I came to see the dismal profile
In cold wax immersed.

We are all looking at you right now.
If this tomb wasn’t a lie
I would hear, again, arrogant,
Your putrid lip that sighs:

“Give me incense. I sprinkled flowers.
In earlier eras
I was queen of Egypt. Today I am alone
Wax. Rotting. Powder.”

“Queen! What is it about you that fascinates me?
In Egypt, as a slave, I adored you.
Now luck destines me
To be a poet and king.

Do not see from your tomb that you reign
In Russia as in Rome? You don’t see it anymore,
That me and Caesar, in centuries and ages,
Will we be equal before fate? ”

I am silent. I contemplate. It does not change.
Only the chest pulsates, almost
Breathing through the gauze,
And I hear a silent speech:

“I once raised passions and struggles.
What do I raise now?
A drunken poet who cries
And the drunken laughter of prostitutes. ”

December 10, 1907
Aleksandr Blok (Алекса́ндр Блок), in the book “Poetry of refusal”. [organization and translation Augusto de Campos]. Signos 42 collection. São Paulo: Editora Perspectiva, 2006.

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