The Steps

We present this work in honor of the author’s 150th birthday.

10-30 Valery
Paul Valery
French
1871 – 1945

 

Your steps, children of my silence,
Holily, slowly placed,
Towards the bed of my vigilance
Proceed dumb and frozen.

Nobody pure, divine shade,
That they are soft, your steps selected!
Gods!… all the gifts which I guess
Come to me on these naked feet!
If, of your advanced lips,
You prepare to alleviate it,
An inhabitant of my thoughts
The food of a kiss,

Does not hasten this tender act,
To be soft and not to be not?
Because I lived to await you,
And my heart was only your steps.

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