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Les Jardins

Andre Marie de Chenier 1762 (Constantinople) – 1794 (Paris)



Secrets observateurs, leur studieuse main
En des vases d'argile et de verre et d'airain
Enferme la nature et les riches campagnes.
Ce sont là leurs vallons, leurs forêts, leurs montagnes.
Barbares possesseurs, Procustes furieux,
Sous le niveau jaloux leur fer injurieux
Mutile sans pitié les plaintives dryades.
Le plomb, les murs de pierre enchaînant les naïades,
De bassins en bassins, de degrés en degrés,
Guident leur chute esclave et leurs pas mesurés,
Là, quelle muse libre et naïve et fidèle
Peut naître? Loin du bois, comme si Philomèle,
Sous leurs treillages peints dont la main du sculpteur
A ciselé l'acanthe ou le lierre imposteur,
Allait chercher ces sons dont le printemps s'honore,
Délices de la nuit, délices de l'aurore!

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Submitted on May 13, 2011

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Andre Marie de Chenier

André Marie Chénier was a French poet of Greek and Franco-Levantine origin, associated with the events of the French Revolution of which he was a victim. His sensual, emotive poetry marks him as one of the precursors of the Romantic movement. His career was brought to an abrupt end when he was guillotined for supposed "crimes against the state", just three days before the end of the Reign of Terror. Chénier's life has been the subject of Umberto Giordano's opera Andrea Chénier and other works of art. more…

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    "Les Jardins" Poetry.com. STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 26 Oct. 2021. <https://www.poetry.com/poem/2429/les-jardins>.

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