Charles Baudelaire: Be Drunk

Be Drunk

Be drunk always! That is the only question; Thats it! Be
drunk without truce.
Not to feel the painful burden of Time , which bruises
your shoulders and bends you down to the ground.

Drunk with what? With wine, with poetry or with virtue,
as you like, but be drunk!

And if sometimes, on the steps of a palace, in the green
grass of a ditch, or in the gloomy solitude of your room,
you should wake up with your drunkenness half-gone or
vanished,
ask the wind and the waves, the star, the bird, the clock, ask
all that flies, all that groans,
all that flows, all that sings, all that speaks.

Ask them what time it is: and the wind, the wave, the star,
the bird, and the clock will answer, “It’s time to be drunk!
If you are not to be the tormented slave of Time, get
drunk, be drunk always! With wine, with poetry, or with
virtue, as you like.”

Translated by Hide and Catherine Oshiro

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