The Scene Behind The Carriage Window Panes

Paul Verlaine

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The scene behind the carriage window-panes
Goes flitting past in furious flight; whole plains
With streams and harvest-fields and trees and blue
Are swallowed by the whirlpool, whereinto
The telegraph's slim pillars topple o'er,
Whose wires look strangely like a music-score.

A smell of smoke and steam, a horrid din
As of a thousand clanking chains that pin
A thousand giants that are whipped and howl,--
And, suddenly, long hoots as of an owl.

What is it all to me? Since in mine eyes
The vision lingers that beatifies,
Since still the soft voice murmurs in mine ear,
And since the Name, so sweet, so high, so dear,
Pure pivot of this madding whirl, prevails
Above the brutal clangor of the rails?

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