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The Musketeers*
in Shadows and ideals

Francis Saltus Saltus

4 pages
Charles Wells Moulton - 1890 - États-Unis

Intérêt: *


Francis Saltus Saltus (1849-1889) est un poète américain qui connut une certaine notoriété durant sa brève existence. Son oeuvre comprend de très nombreux sonnets. Le recueil posthume Shadows and ideals compte près de quatre cents poèmes dont beaucoup de sonnets. Parmi ceux-ci figure un ensemble de quatre poèmes sous le titre The Musketeers, chacun dédié à l’un des quatre mousquetaires.

L’auteur y rend hommage successivement à d’Artagnan, Aramis, Porthos et Athos dans un style qui a malheureusement vieilli. Parfaitement francophone, Saltus a également écrit en français un poème Les Mousquetaires publié dans le même recueil.

Merci à Mihai-Bogdan Ciuca de m'avoir signalé ce texte.

Texte intégral des quatre sonnets

The Musketeers

Thou art eternal, tho' the mighty brain
That brought thee forth from shadowland is dead;
In thee he lives imperishable, wed
To every joy of thine, to every pain.

Thy valiant deeds indelible remain;
We love thy young, hot blood in battle shed,
And by thy every daring deed are led
More firmly admiration to retain.

Whene'er thy name defiant meets mine eyes,
I see thee hurrying on a foaming steed
With valorous Porthos ripe from war's alarms.
And then again in sadness I surmise
How thy fond spirit must have bled, indeed,
When pressing thy dead Constance in thine arms!

The Musketeers

Thy heart was one of craft, yet thou wast brave
As steel Castilian; but ambition's bane
Lurked in the subtle essence of thy brain,
And naught beyond this passion didst thou crave.

Battling for decades by an open grave,
Thou didst not swerve, nor didst thou e'er restrain
Thy mental greeds, thy ceaseless chase for gain,
Which at the end thy comrade could not save.

Ah! nobler far wast thou on that blue morn,
When Porthos, sinking in a grave of stone,
Fell like a Hercules, no more to rise.
Then, anguished, mute, irresolute, forlorn,
Thy heart lay broken by his dying groan.
And tears surprised the desert of thine eyes.

The Musketeers

O child-like giant! in thy massive frame
A heart that grasped the world did nobly beat.
Type of the gallant musketeer complete,
Thy blow was death, thy rapier was a flame!

Pleased with a bauble, a baronnie name,
No fertile plain or castle-crowned retreat
Could stay the riotous rushing of thy feet,
When time for wonderful adventure came!

I see thee battling with a hero's zeal,
Brave in that blessed land where all are brave,
Eager for estocade at dawn or gloom;
And then, again, on pinnacled Belle Isle,
I see the grim, red hell-light of thy cave,
And watch thee die in thy Titanic tomb!

The Musketeers

Thy mind was fit for prehistoric time,
When man was perfect, ere the birth of guile;
I love the gentle glamour of thy smile;
I love thy heart beyond all taint or crime.

No passion base e'er touched thee with its slime;
In thee dwelt radiant honor and no wile;
And not a thought ignoble could defile
Thy soul, that ever higher seemed to climb!

Whene'er of all thy prowesses I read,
I see thee, grave, before me, with thy wine,
The mellow vin d'Anjou thou lov'dst so well;
And then again, Homeric, on thy steed,
Clearing the foemen with a smile divine,
Below the embattled walls of La Rochelle!




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