The French writer and aviator Antoine de Saint–Exupery (1900–1944) disappeared on July 31st 1944 while flying a reconnaissance mission over occupied France during World War II. The Israel poet Dahila Ravikovitch wrote this beautiful poem in his memory. It is interesting to note that she made a mistake, his plane disappeared in 1944 and not in 1943.
In Memory of Antoine de Saint Exupery by Dahlia Ravikovitch
Translated by Orna Raz
A ghastly shining moon
reminded me in the middle of the night
how in forty three died
de Saint Exupery.
Now it has been twenty-one years
and pieces of paper are flying in the wind,
and for twenty-one years
the sea turns blue every spring,
now twenty-one years
and all his bones have turned into sand.
and whoever is alive today is without him.
Twenty-one years ago
his plane fell into the Mediterranean sea,
shaking amidst the strong spring winds.
The world is not what it was
weeds and wind,
wind and sand.
This surely is the look of the world
that no longer has Saint Exupery.
People don’t live forever
and we too are not forever
but was he saved that one time in March of forty-three,
he would be with us
a shiny grain,
a rose in the wind
Laughing in the clouds.