Hearing Ludwig

Masque De Beethoven, Benjamin Constant

I see classic cartoons when I close my eyes,
memories from childhood
happy, joyful naïveté that has since left me.
I wish I spoke Italian, though French
is close. Now I see dirt instead of grass,
mud instead of paint,
weeds instead of blossoms.

To sing with life, to dance with
the butterflies and hob-nob
with the grasshoppers
knowing that tomorrow
the caterpillars I set free
will visit me in the afternoon

but they will be insect-catchers then,
and no longer beautiful.