One day, night will settle over everything
and joy and sorrow will be able to look each other
straight in the eye because mirrors will have ceased
setting us up against our vain reflections. The tiger,
even in the cage-bars’ shadow, will know that fame
that comes from books is null; that the pure gold was taken
from the folk-tale hero, and that he’s now gobbling down his prey
chilled but worthy in the wind of combat.
He who thought himself blind, timid, lacking
courage, descended into hell, married
Beatrice, and, baring his throat to the old razor-blade
of Time, face up to the other, that unknown double
behind the door, who made the roses bleed.
Translated by Marilyn Hacker