Listening to Shells



I had not begun to see you you were AUBE

Nothing was unveiled
All the boats rocked at the shore
Unknotting the favours (you know) of these pink and white boxes of sweets between which a silver shuttle runs
And trembling I named you Aube

Ten years after
I find you again in the tropical flower
A single snow crystal that overflowed the cup of your two hands
In Martinique they call it the fleur du bal
She and you share the mystery of existence
The first grain of dew far ahead of all the others madly iridescent containing all

I see what is forever hidden from me
When you sleep in the clearing of your arm beneath the butterflies of your hair
And when you are reborn from the phoenix of your spring
In the mint of memory
Of the enigmatic moiré of the likeness in a bottomless mirror
Pulling the pin of that which one will see only once

In my heart all the wings of the milkweed
Lease what you tell me

You wear a summer dress unknown to yourself
It is constellated in every sense with horseshoe magnets of a handsome lead red with blue feet

Sur mer, 1946

–André Breton, translation DTH

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