LEDA LEDA
Rubén Darío tr. Steven F.White & Greg Simon
El cisne en la sombra parece de nieve;
su pico es de ámbar, del alba al trasluz;
el suave crepúsculo que pasa tan breve
las cándidas alas sonrosa de luz.

Y luego, en las ondas del lago azulado,
después que la aurora perdió su arrebol,
las alas tendidas y el cuello enarcado,
el cisne es de plata, bañado de sol.

Tal es, cuando esponja las plumas de seda,
olímpico pájaro herido de amor,
y viola en las linfas sonoras a Leda,
buscando su pico los labios en flor.

Suspira la bella desnuda y vencida,
y en tanto que al aire sus quejas se van,
del fondo verdoso de fronda tupida
chispean turbados los ojos de Pan.
The swan composed of snow floats in shadow,
amber beak translucent in the last light.
The white and innocent wings in the glow
of the short-lived dusk are rose-tipped and bright.

And then, on ripples of the clear blue lake,
when the crimson dawn is over and done,
the swan spreads his wings and lets his neck make
an arch, silver and burnished by the sun.

Grand, as he ruffles his silken feathers,
this bird from Olympus bearing love’s wound,
ravishing Leda in roiling waters,
thrusting at petals of her sex in bloom ...

When at last her sobbing is heard no more,
the stripped, mastered beauty lets out a sigh.
From some tangled green rushes by the shore,
sparkle-eyed Pan watches and wonders why.

Trans. copyright © Steven F.White & Greg Simon


next
index
translator's next