Success: Sukces

Success is counted sweetest
By those who ne’er succeed.
To comprehend a nectar
Requires sorest need.
Not one of all the purple host
Who took the flag to-day
Can tell the definition,
So clear, of victory,
As he, defeated, dying,
On whose forbidden ear
The distant strains of triumph
Break, agonized and clear!

 

*****

 

Sukces najwdzięczniejszy
Tym, co go nie odnieśli nigdy.
Nektar tym tylko docenić
Co w potrzebie nielitościwej.
Nikt w gromadzie tej purpury
Co dziś wzięła flagę
Określenia dać nie umie
Tak jasnego, wygranej,
Jak on, pokonany, umierający,
A jego ucha, zakazane,
Odległe triumfu tony
Sięgają widne i skonane!

 

TRANSLATOR’S NOTE

The verse was reportedly published in “A Masque of Poets”, at the request of “H.H.,” the author’s fellow-townswoman and friend. It brings a picture of a brief yet transient victory of the opposite side. Making my decision on preserving the unitary, short form layout, I also could follow the punctuation in the Houghton print image, as presented in Wikipedia. I keep the semantics of the Higginson-Todd, as the one to make sense. Feel welcome to read,

 

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