EN LA IMPONENTE NAVE ...IN THE IMPOSING NAVE ...
Gustavo Adolfo Bécquertrans. Brian Cole
En la imponente nave
del templo bizantino,
vi la gótica tumba, a la indecisa
luz que temblaba en los pintados vidrios.

Las manos sobre el pecho,
y en las manos un libro,
una mujer hermosa reposaba
sobre la urna, del cincel prodigio.

Del cuerpo abandonado
al dulce peso hundido,
cual si de blanda pluma y raso fuera,
se plegaba su lecho de granito.

De la postrer sonrisa,
el resplandor divino
guardaba el rostro, como el cielo guarda
del sol que muere el rayo fugitivo.

Del cabezal de piedra
sentados en el filo
dos ángeles el dedo sobre el labio,
imponían silencio en el recinto.

No parecia muerta;
de los arcos macizos
parecía dormir en la penumbra,
y que en sueños veía el paraíso.

Me acerqué de la nave
al ángulo sombrío,
como quien llega con callada planta
junto a la cuna donde duerme un niño.

Le contemplé un momento,
y aquel resplandor tibio,
aquel lecho de piedra que ofrecía
proximo al muro otro lugar vacío,

en el alma avivaron
la sed de lo infinito,
el ansia de esa vida de la muerte,
para la que un instante son los siglos ...

Cansado del combate
en que luchando vivo,
alguna vez recuerdo con envidia
aquel rincón oscuro y escondido.

De aquella muda y pálida
mujer, me acuerdo y digo:
"¡oh, qué amor tan callado el de la muerte!
¡Qué sueño el del sepulcro tan tranquilo!"
In the imposing nave
of that Byzantine temple
I saw the Gothic tomb in the uncertain
light that trembled in the stained-glass windows.

Her hands were on her breast,
and in her hands a book,
and this most beautiful woman was lying
on the urn, a miracle of carving.

Sinking under the weight
of her sweet abandoned body
her granite bed was creased as if made
of the softness of feathers and of satin.

Of her last sweet smile
her face preserved the divine
radiance, just as the heavens preserve
the fleeting rays of the dying sun.

Sitting at the edge
of her pillow of stone
two angels with fingers on their lips
enjoined silence all around.

She did not seem dead;
she seemed to be asleep
in the shadow of the massive arches,
and seeing paradise in her slumber.

I approached the darkness
at the corner of the nave
as someone walking on quiet feet
would approach the cradle where a child is asleep.

I looked at her for a moment
as she glowed there brightly,
and at her bed of stone that offered
another, empty, space by the wall,

and they revived in my soul
the thirst for the infinite,
the yearning for that life in death
for which the centuries are but a moment.

Weary of the battle
I fight all through my life
sometimes I recall with envy
that retreat so dark and hidden.

I recall that pale
and silent woman, and say:
"What a silent love is that of death!
What a peaceful sleep is that of the grave!"

Trans. copyright © Brian Cole 2003


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