Arthur Rimbaud and his poems are known all over the world, but one of them has particularly won the hearts of poetry lovers.

Some of the most famous poems in history.

Arthur Rimbaud (1854-1891), is a very famous French poet and a must in symbolism. He wrote some of the most famous poems in history. A precocious genius, he stopped writing at the age of 20. Paul Verlaine, with whom he had an affair, pays homage to him in Les Poètes Maudits.
Le Dormeur du Val (1870) is Arthur Rimbaud’s most beautiful and famous poem. This sonnet in Alexandrians from the second Cahier de Douai is inspired by the battle of Sedan. It describes a quiet young soldier in the midst of welcoming nature. The dramatic end tells us that the man is dead.

This scene, a dead soldier in the middle of an omnipresent and welcoming nature, indeed arouses the indignation of Rimbaud.

The manuscript now kept at the British Library in London was offered to Paul Demeny in the fall of 1870, for a first publication in 1888 in the anthology of French poets.

C’est un trou de verdure où chante une rivière,
Accrochant follement aux herbes des haillons
D’argent ; où le soleil, de la montagne fière,
Luit : c’est un petit val qui mousse de rayons.

Un soldat jeune, bouche ouverte, tête nue,
Et la nuque baignant dans le frais cresson bleu,
Dort ; il est étendu dans l’herbe, sous la nue,
Pâle dans son lit vert où la lumière pleut.

Les pieds dans les glaïeuls, il dort. Souriant comme
Sourirait un enfant malade, il fait un somme :
Nature, berce-le chaudement : il a froid.

Les parfums ne font pas frissonner sa narine ;
Il dort dans le soleil, la main sur sa poitrine,
Tranquille. Il a deux trous rouges au côté droit.

Arthur Rimbaud

Translation :
It is a green hollow where a river sings,
Madly clinging to grass rags
Silver; where the sun, from the proud mountain,
Luit: it’s a small valley foaming with rays.
A young soldier, mouth open, head bare,
And the neck bathed in fresh blue watercress,
Sleeps; he is lying in the grass, under the clouds,
Pale in his green bed where the light rains.
His feet in the gladioli, he sleeps. Smiling like
A sick child would smile, he takes a nap:
Nature, rock him warmly: he is cold.
Perfumes do not make his nostrils shiver;
He sleeps in the sun, his hand on his chest,
Calm. There are two red holes on the right side.

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