The villages crouched in the plains of Flanders

Tenebrae

By Emile Verhaeren

A moon, with vacant, chilling eye, stares
At the winter, enthroned vast and white upon the hard ground;
The night is an entire and translucent azure;
The wind, a blade of sudden presence, stabs.


Far away, on the skylines, the long pathways of frost,

Seen, in the distance, to pierce the expanses,
And stars of gold, suspended to the zenith,
Always higher, amid the ether, to rend the blue of the sky.


The villages crouched in the plains of Flanders,

Near the rivers, the heather, and the great forests,
Between two pale infinities, shiver with cold,
Huddled near old hearthsides, where they stir the ashes.