My Retreat - Page 3 of 4

by Dr. José Rizal

(English version of “Mi Retiro”)

I live in the thought of the lov'd ones left,
And oft their names to my mind are borne;
Some have forsaken me and some by death are reft;
But now 'tis all one, as through the past I drift,
That past which from me can never be torn.

For it is the friend that is with me always,
That ever in sorrow keeps the faith in my soul;
While through the still night it watches and prays,
As here in my exile in my one hut it stays
To strengthen my faith when doubts o'er me roll.

That faith I keep and I hope to see shine
The day when the Idea prevails over might;
When after the fray and death's slow decline.
Some other voice sounds, far happier than mine,
To raise the glad song of the triumph of right.

I see the sky glow, refulgent and clear,
As when it forced on me my first dear illusion;
I feel the same wind kiss my forehead sere,
And the fire is the same that is burning here
To stir up youth's blood in boiling confusion.

I breathe here the winds that perchance have pass'd
O'er the fields and the rivers of my own natal shore;
And mayhap they will bring on the returning blast
The sighs that lov'd being upon them has cast --
Messages sweet from the love I first bore.

To see the same moon, all silver'd as of yore.
I feed the sad thoughts within me arise;
The fond recollections of the troth we swore,
Of the field and the bower and the wide seashore,
The blushes of joy, with the silence and sighs.

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