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How Butterflies Are Born
by [?]

(“Comme le matin rit sur les roses.”)

[Bk. I. xii.]

The dawn is smiling on the dew that covers
The tearful roses–lo, the little lovers–
That kiss the buds and all the flutterings
In jasmine bloom, and privet, of white wings
That go and come, and fly, and peep, and hide
With muffled music, murmured far and wide!
Ah, Springtime, when we think of all the lays
That dreamy lovers send to dreamy Mays,
Of the proud hearts within a billet bound,
Of all the soft silk paper that men wound,
The messages of love that mortals write,
Filled with intoxication of delight,
Written in April, and before the Maytime
Shredded and flown, playthings for the winds’ playtime.
We dream that all white butterflies above,
Who seek through clouds or waters souls to love,
And leave their lady mistress to despair,
To flirt with flowers, as tender and more fair,
Are but torn love-letters, that through the skies
Flutter, and float, and change to Butterflies.

Translated by A. LANG.