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Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Spain, Portugal, Belgium, and Holland: Vols. XIV–XV. 1876–79.

Spain: Sierra Nevada

The Last Sigh of the Moor

By Théophile Gautier (1811–1872)

Translated by C. F. Bates

THE CAVALIER who hastes the height to gain

Pale and with trembling knees,

Is Boabdil, king of the Moors of Spain,

Who could have died, yet flees.

To Spaniards now Granada is restored,

Crescent doth yield to cross,

By Boabdil, with tears not blood deplored,

Is his dear city’s loss.

Upon a rock, Sigh of the Moor, they call,

Boabdil sat, and cast

On far Granada and Alhambra’s wall

A long look and the last.

“There I was caliph yesterday,

Lived like a very god below;

The Generalife wooed my stay,

And then the Alhambra’s blazing glow.

Clear, floating baths were mine, and there

Sultanas, my three hundred fair,

Bathed, all secure from impious stare.

My name on all the world cast fear.

Alas! my power is now brought low,

My valiant army flies the foe,

With none to follow me I go

Save my own shadow, ever near.

Dissolve, dissolve in tears, my eyes!

Up from my armor heave the steel,

Ye deep heart-sighs that now arise!

He conquers to whom Christians kneel!

I go; adieu, fair sky of Spain,

Darro, Jénil, the verdant plain,

The snowy peaks with rosy stain;

Farewell, Granada! loves, adieu!

Sunny Alhambra, vermeil towers,

Fresh gardens filled with wondrous flowers,

In vigils and in dreaming hours,

Absent, I still shall look on you!”