|Funeral Cortege of Victor Hugo|
What is the end of all things - life or grave?
Is it the upholding, or the whelming, wave?
So many tangled tracks whose distant goal
Is what? The cradle holds - fate or man's soul?
Are we below, in blest or wretched state,
Predestined kings, or pawns foredoomed of fate?
Didst Thou, oh God, Lord Almighty, say,
Create man but to tread his destined way?
Say, does the crib the cross already hold?
These silken nests, touched by cool dawn with gold,
Where amid flowers budding plumes expand,
Were they for small fowls or for fowlers planned?
translated from the French by R.J.P. Hewison