after Baudelaire

Be quiet, my sorrow, calm down now.
You cried for night; it falls: darkness
is gathering the city in its low folds,
bringing peace to some, to others, anguish.

While the madding crowds hop and press
to pleasure’s pricks, not knowing—
not caring—that the dealer will have his day,
oh sorrow, give me your hand, come away,

let them be. Look, the dead years float
their faded dresses from the balconies of the sky,
regret drifts from the river bed, smiling,

the ashen sun slumps beneath an arch
and in the east, like the slow dragging of a shroud,
listen, my love, listen to the gentle night march.