It is a terrible terrain
  no mortal eye has seen
whose image still seduces me
  this morning as it fades. . .

Sleep is full of miracles!
  Some impulse in my dream
bad rid the region I devised
  of every growing thing.

and proud of the resulting scene
  I savored in my art
the rapturous monotony
  of metal, water, stone. . .

A maze of stairs and arches formed
  an endless palace filled
with basins where the bright cascades
  fell into tarnished gold;

Like crystal curtains, cataracts
  streamed down metal walls,
shimmering where the ripples made
  perpetual descent;

colonnades instead of trees
  shaded sleeping pools
where, vain as women, huge naiads
  marveled at themselves;

pale-blue sheets of water spread
  between the marble quays—
their rims of rose and green converged
  a universe away;

unimaginable gems
  glowed in magic streams;
mirrors dizzily exchanged
  the dazzling world they showed!

Sacred rivers crossed the sky
  in silent unconcern,
pouring the treasure of their urns
  into diamond gulfs.

Architect of such conceits,
  I sent submissive seas
into the jewelled conduits
  my will erected there;

and every color, even black,
  became a lustrous prism;
liquid turned to glowing glass
  and what was crystal flowed;

yet neither sun nor moon appeared,
  and no horizon paled
to light such wonders—from within
  each thing was luminous!

And on these marvels as they moved
  there weighed (without a sound—
the eye alone was master here)
  the silence of the Void.


Waking, dazzled, I was back
  in my familiar slum
and felt returning to my soul
  the curse of all my cares;

with unrelenting strokes the clock
  insisted it was noon,
and shadows poured out of the sky
  upon a sluggish world.