THE SEASON OF THE NORTHERS
The wearying summer’s burning heat
Is now assuaged; for from the North
The winds from frost come shaken forth,
’Midst clouds o’er Cuba rushing fleet,
And free us from the fever’s wrath.
Deep roars the sea, with breast swell’d high,
And beats the beach with lashing waves;
Zephyr his wings in freshness laves,
And o’er the sun and shining sky,
Veil-like, transparent vapours fly.
Hail, happy days! by you o’erthrown
We see the altar, which ’mong flowers
May rear’d to Death: attendant lowers,
With pallid face, vile Fever lone,
And with sad brilliancy it shone.
Both saw the sons, with anxious brow,
Of milder realms approaching nigh,
Beneath this all-consuming sky:
With their pale sceptres touched, they bow,
And in the fatal grave are now.
But their reign o’er, on outspread wing,
To purify the poison’d air,
The north winds cold and moisture bear;
Across our fields they sounding spring,
And rest from August’s rigours bring.
O’er Europe’s gloomy climates wide,
Now from the North fierce sweeps the blast;
Verdure and life from earth are past:
With snow man sees it whelm’d betide,
And in closed dwellings must abide.
There all is death and grief! but here,
All life and joy! see, Phœbus smile
More sooth through lucid clouds, the while
Our woods and plains new lustres cheer,
And double spring inspires the year.
O, happy land! his tenderest care
Thee, favour’d! the Creator yields,
And kindest smile: ne’er from thy fields
Again may fate me fiercely tear!
O, let my last sun light me there!
How sweet it is to hear the rain,
My love! so softly falling thus
On the low roof that shelters us!
And the winds whistling o’er the plain
And bellowings of the distant main.
Fill high my cup with golden wine;
Let cares and griefs be driven away;
That proved by thee, my thirst to stay,
Will, my adored! more precious shine,
So touch’d by those sweet lips of thine.
By thee on easy seat reclined,
My lyre how happy will I string;
My love and country’s praise to sing;
My blissful lot, thy face and mind,
And love ineffable and kind!
(Octubre de 1822)
José María Heredia
Translation by James Kennedy
James Kennedy. "Modern poets and poetry of Spain" (1860). Produced by Cornell University Library, 1992.