I would like, while chastely composing my eclogues, to lie close to
the sky, like an astrologer; hearing solemn hymns, as in a dream,
carried by the wind from neighboring bells. Chin on my hands,
from my high garret I will behold the workshop of singsong and
chitchat; chimney pots, bell towers, the city’s masts; broad skies
that set eternity to dreaming.Sweet as it is to see, through the fog, a star born from the blue, the
lamp in a window, rivers of smoke rising into the firmament and
the moon pouring down its pale enchantment. I will see springs,
summers, autumns; and when winter arrives with its monotonous
snow I will close every curtain, every shutter, to construct in the
night my fantastic alaces. Then I will dream of blue-tinged ho-
rizons, gardens, alabaster fountains that weep, kisses, birds sing-
ing evening and morning, and whatever most childish item my
Idyll will absorb. Riot, vainly raging at my window, will not raise
my forehead from my desk-for I will be voluptuously immersed
in evoking by will the Spring, drawing a sun from my heart, and
forging from my burning thought an atmosphere of warmth.

— Keith Waldrop translation