Through summer air
The ascending gull
Dominates the expanse, the sea, the world
Under the blue, under clouds
Like the whitest wool-tufts,
And supreme, regal, It soars.
All of space is a wave transfixed.
White and black feathers
Slow the ascent,
Suddenly slipping on the air,
On the vast light. It buoys up the whiteness of the void.
And suspended, its wings abandon themselves
To clarity, to the transparent depths
Where flight, with stilled wings,
Gives itself entirely to its own delight, its falling,
And plunges into its own passing—
A pure instant of life.
Translated by Reginald Gibbons