Source: Procès des Communards by Jacques Rougerie. Paris, Julliard, 1964;
Translated: for Marxists.org by Mitchell Abidor;
CopyLeft: Creative Commons (Attribute & ShareAlike) marxists.org 2005.
Louise Michel wrote this poem in honor and memory of the Communard Théophile Ferré, Blanquist Delegate to the Police, who refused to recognize a military court’s right to judge him after the defeat of the Commune, and was sentenced to death and executed.
If one day to the cold cemetery I were to go,
brothers, cast on your sister,
like a final hope,
some red carnations in bloom.
In the final days of the empire,
as the people awoke,
red carnation, it was your smile
that told us all was reborn.
And now, go blossom in the shade
of dark and drear prisons,
go blossom near the somber captive,
and tell him we love him.
Tell him that in these changing times
everything belongs to the future;
that the victor with his pallid brow
can die as easily as the vanquished.