The Bohemian Raises His Glass

Carlos Pezoa Veliz
1879 – 1908


Don’t look down on the drunkards who perish
befuddling their sorrows with wine:
you don’t hate the flowers that flourish
light-headed in morning sunshine.

The eyes of the ladies attract us
to the high drunken rapture of passion;
their kisses are Bacchus’s nectars –
our lips are in thrall to sensation.

Drunk with light goes Ophelia, sunken
in the gloom of a desolate plain;
the priest at the altar is drunken
with the blood of a god that is slain,
like the poet who gazes unblinking
at the boundless blue eye of the main.

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