The Poet's Princess

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Funeral march

’Torn with pain gnawing like a famished rat at the pit of my stomach, I have no courage to live. The flames of Hell are burning in my scorched mouth. A leaden fist clouts my head into the crumpled cushion. Tombstones crush my eyelids. My eardrums hum with the echo of a funeral march.

’I am dying of a broken heart! It sounds so false, it sounds so cheap! Yet there are no other words how to express it!

’I am dying of a broken heart! No true Poet should ever utter such a platitude! Hear what I do for you, Princess!

’I am dying of a broken heart. A sweltering fire devours my flesh with the same ferocious vileness as if I were dying of cancer.

’Do you see my life fleeing from you, Princess?

’Dramatically opposed, body and soul are intimately joined in a spiral of life and death.

’I am dying of a broken heart. This is not a literary turn of phrase. It is a fact, painfully real.

’Do you hear my howl, Princess?

’The courtiers are gossiping about me, those scandal-lechers feasting on my suffering.

“Have you heard, Sarasin is dead! Prince de Conti, fed up with his pranks, hit him so hard with the fire-tongs that the little imp couldn’t get up again.”

“You got it all wrong, my dear! The husband of one of his numerous mistresses poisoned him!”

“Nonsense! He died of fever after a Ball at Conti’s where the poor devil fished so hard for being complimented on his dancing that it killed him. Not so very young to afford himself such an excess, was he?”

’Am I really touched by this silly gossip serving me as an epitaph? Can spite be deadly to a dying man?

’The last I saw her ... The LAST time? Is then my death a fact?- she sat in the coach taking her away to Normandy, pale, her face grief-stricken, clothed in black. A widow. The widow of her betrayed love.

’How does a Poet resurrect a woman gone beyond the power of his words?

’My burning lips on her ice-cold hand, the hand belonging to another man!

’She did not see ME

’She did not feel ME

’My love was just another word for her.

’Abandoned, before being forsaken, the Princess is buried under the ashes of her love.

’Dull rain seeps from a sallow sky. The fountain, at the bottom of the garden, drowns in its ceaseless flow. Hurled into the depths of my misery, I wait for the night to weep my lost love out.

’White horses, harnessed to a black coach, run towards the lost horizon.

’I am dying of a broken heart.

’After all, this is a poet’s destiny, a fate according to his heart.

’Poet, give your measurements to eternity!

’Like a coin, passing from one hand to another, my life is worn thin. The Princess, a shadow of my beautiful dream, reclines over my dead body.

’Go away, Princess!

’Go away, Anne!

’What a relief! Even you are no longer capable of raising me from death!

’The light, Anne! The LIGHT in the depth of a dark corridor!

’Don’t look!

’Don’t try to understand!

’To know “too much” is the direct way to madness!

’Sharp as beaks of yapping parrots, words drone on and on upon my coffin in a single flute tone. My love’s heart, pierced by thousand arrows of your indifference, is bled white!

’Remember me, Princess!

’Remember my poems for you, Anne!

’I am the holder of the total sum of love!


’Who will now succour you, Princess?

’Who will now stay with you, Anne?

’Without hope, my obligations to you finished, I leave you, Anne!

’Farewell, Princess!

’Farewell, my bygone love!

’Farewell, the soul-of-my-soul!

’The veil on the barge of my life is black.

’I am tired of living.

’Death is just a sigh.

’Life is an unutterable word.′

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