by Paul Verlaine
, originally written in French
. Parsifal, or Persival
, was one of King Arthur
. He is a figure of purity
who features prominently in the legend
of the Holy Grail
. The last line of this poem can be found in "The Fire Sermon
" section of T.S. Eliot
's The Waste Land
, where the King Arthur legend also receives a lot of play
. In that poem, Parsifal would be a figure of hope
. Perhaps it is for that reason
that he is only indirect
by Paul Verlaine
Parsifal a vaincu les Filles, leur gentil
Babil et la luxure amusante - et sa pente
Vers la Chair de garçon vierge que cela tente
D'aimer les seins légers et ce gentil babil;
Il vaincu la Femme belle, au cur subtil,
Étalant ses bras frais et sa gorge excitante;
Il a vaincu l'Enfer et rentre sous sa tente
Avec un lourd trophée à son bras puéril,
Avec la lance qui perça le Flanc suprême!
Il a guéri le roi, le voici roi lui-même,
Et prêtre du très saint Trésor essentiel.
En robe d'or il adore, gloire et symbole,
Le vase pur où resplendit le Sang réel.
- Et, ô ces voix d'enfants chantant dans la coupole!*
it can be translated as follows:
Parsifal has vanquished the daughters, with their gentle
Babble and amusing luxuriance; despite delight
Of the flesh that lures the virgin youth, tempts him
To love their swelling breasts and gentle babble;
He has vanquished fair Womankind, of subtle heart,
Her tender arms outstretched and her throat pale;
From harrowing Hell, he now returns triumphant,
Bearing a heavy trophy in his boyish hands,
With the spear that pierced the Saviour's side!
He healed the King, and shall be himself enthroned,
As priest-king of the sacred, vital treasures.
In robe of gold he worships that sign of grace,
The unblemished vessel in which shines the Holy Blood.
- And, o those children's voices singing in the dome!
* In my source (http://home.c2i.net/monsalvat/verlaine.htm) this line is written as above. Elsewhere on Everything2 it is written as "Et O ces voix d enfants, chantant dans la coupole!" Versions. Go figure.