(from the Spanish of Luis Cernuda)
Now, in the purple sunset of the evening,
With the magnolias in flower and wet with dew,
To walk along those streets while the moon
Waxes in the heavens will be a waking dream.
Flocks of swallows with their keening will make
The sky more immense; the water in the fountain
Will loose the deep voice of the earth; then
Sky and earth will fall silent.
In the corner of some cloister, alone
With your head in your hand, like a ghost
Returned, you will weep thinking
How beautiful life was, and how pointless.
Translation © James Munro