Paris Bloqué

By Victor Hugo

O city, you will make history kneel.
Bleeding is your beauty, dying is your victory.
But no, you’re not dying. Your blood is flowing, but those
Who saw Caesar laughing in your lazy arms,
Are astonished: you cross the expiatory flame,
In the admiration of the people, in glory,
You find, Paris, much more than you lose.
Those who besiege you, mourning city, you conquer them.
Low and false prosperity is slow death;
You fell mad and gay, and you grew bloody.
You come out, you whom the poisonous empire slept,
From the shrinking of this hideous happiness.
You wake up goddess and hunt the satyr.
You become a warrior again by becoming a martyr;
And in honour, beauty, truth, high morals,
You are reborn on one side when on the other you die.

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