space He is affection and the present because he has made the house which is open to the frothy winter and to the murmur of summer, he who has purified drink and food, he who is the charm of fugitive places and the superhuman delight of halts. He is the affection and the future, the strength and the love which we, standing in rage and boredom, see passing in the stormy sky among banners of ectasy.

He is love, the measure perfect and reinvented, marvellous and unexpected reason, and eternity: beloved machine of the fatal powers. We have all known the terror of his yielding and of our own: O delight in our health, impetus of our faculties, selfish affection and passion for him, him who loves us for his eternal life...

And we call him back to us and he travels on... And if Adoration goes away, ring, his promise rings: "Away with these superstitions, these old bodies, these couples and these ages. It is this epoch that has sunk!"

He will not go away, he will not descend from any heaven again, he will not achieve the redemption of women's anger and men's gaieties and all that sin: because it is done, because he exists and is loved.

O his breaths, his heads, his runnings; the terrible swiftness of the perfection of forms and of action.

O fruitfulness of the mind and immensity of the universe.

His body! The dreamed-of redemption, the shattering of grace meeting with new violence!

The sight of him, the sight of him! all the old kneelings and pains lifted at his passing.

His light! the abolition of all audible and moving suffering in more intense music.

His step! migrations more enormous than the old invasions.

O He and We! pride more benign than wasted charities.

O world! and the clear song of new misfortunes!

He has known us all and has loved us all. May we know, this winter night, from promontory to promontory, from the tumultuous pole to the country house, from the multitude to the beach, from looks to looks, strength and feelings wearied, how to hail him and see him, and to send him away, and beneath the tides and at the top of the deserts of snow, to follow his vision, his breath, his body, his light.

- As translated by Oliver Bernard: Arthur Rimbaud, Collected Poems (1962)

French version