Paul Verlaine: “We Have to Learn to Forgive”

We Have to Learn to Forgive

You know, we have to learn to forgive.
This is how we’ll be glad together.
And if sadness mars the lives we live,
Then at least we’ll be sad together.

O sister-souls, I wish we could blend
These lost desires with a childlike ease,
And travel far from women and men
In the oblivion of refugees.

Let us be children, then, girls very small,
Pale-faced in a chaste little garden,
Enamored by nothing, amazed by it all,
Not knowing we’re already pardoned.

Paul Verlaine

Translated from French by Paul Weinfield, © 2015
Photo by Jean-Philippe Charbonnier

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