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Below is the full text of Marceau's poem Le Troisième Oeil (translated from the French) that accompanies a suite of ten lithographs by the same name.


The third eye open in the light,

Ephemeral continents outside time,

Silent witness of the life of beings engendered in pangs of permanent creation.

Cosmos giving birth to spirit's Fire.

Skies, seas and lands, winds, tides,

Hurricanes of space on space,

The spirit sweeps into the midst of lightning's volleys and the thunder's snarl.

Space is rent.

Live force of the Beyond and the divine, the world makes itself in our own image.

Beauty and ugliness embrace through visions of the universe where life and death map out their frontiers.

Here breath all-powerful, yet frail before eternity.

Man fought death's angel with his naked hands, killed Cain, his brother, with a stone, and as of old, in time of original sin, he bowed his bloody head beneath the skies there where Adam and Eve, God-driven, fled their Eden.

Against the firmaments, two thousand years of history walked in.

Time past, time present, cataclysms response upon the threshold of eternity, there where astronauts, men satellites stole the wings of that anachronistic and forgotten angel.

Men earthy, earthy men of flesh of blood survivors of great slaughters, sure to find happiness through light and shade, we are alone, yet all one with the many million faces.

Saltimbancos, wandering Jews, forgotten brothers who return from the long voyage.

Here are the crowds, the witness of their eyes.

Barefoot bohemians who unhook the stars, our nights provoke reality of dreams.

Flamboyant suns, and haggard livid moons which cast into salt seas the flash that blues skies of foam on foam.

We shall scale mountains without craters, and like Sisyphus re-ascending once again to the summit of those stones which fall and fall into the abyss, we'll fling our clamor to the desert's muffled heart.

Time flies like immobility.

The torrents of our life flow drop by drop.

Before the door of bronze erected on quick sands.

My fist bleeds through too much battering.

Thus our prayers are rent in gusts of history.

The soul steps out and stops before the seven seals affixed by the four horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Oh! Incessant combats of humanity.

Discoveries, blessings, griefs, cries of love and hate,

Thirst for liberty, you are but thoughts that brave becoming.

In the fraction of a second, I saw Christ crucified, the Christians thrown to lions, the first crusades, the Inquisition and the Holocaust.

Oh century of enlightenment!

The Renaissance, Revolutions: 1789, and 1917, famine in the Indies, China's wall, disasters glimpsed through all the wars where ashes of the dead and living mingle, those of Hiroshima.

Nuclear era, now the neutron bomb.

But man still lives amid his metamorphoses.

Here you have us, masters, slaves, the victors and the vanquished, the great, the humbled, thye mighty and the mean, but still vulnerable among our blind and seeing brothers.

The time of silences and clamors melts in the timelessness. Where is this third eye which sensed each instant is a combat without end?

Where are you humankind who dream of love eyes open in the light?

A while ago the angel smiled at the wing-torn devil halting in his flight, his laughter not Homeric as he hoped, for conscience shattered it.

My soul has hugged a secret just as yours, that of tomorrow in an intangible world.

Lands of the future, flamboyant suns,

Stars of sapphire,

There will be more bright battles where the cries and tears are those of love emerging from the shades.

The ground-swell breaks,

Space topples,

All things converge in vast creative thought.

This is the dawn of a new world, reality and dream are of the selfsame brotherhood.

Now enter the new age.

The sovereign spirit is in the firmament of stars.

Being is lit . . . . . . .

Love and liberty hold out their arms to us.

My dream, assure me that the third eye is.

I more than need the time to love and live.

A silent, fragile hand has drawn in space a white flower emptied of its blood.

Soon it will open, blossom out,

Soon, thought faded, bloom again.

Time is the great healer.

Too quick the question nags: where is the third eye, where?

The near-forgotten angel brushed my shoulder with his wing,

Accomplice, gave a flicker of his lids and breather in silence, sounds that I heard echoing . . . . .

One thing I ask: know that we always bear this third eye deep within our inmost selves.

The text of Le Troisième Oeil is used here courtesy of The Genesis Gallery, Ltd.


Marceau's Stage Performance — His character Bip, his Style Pantomimes, his Mimodrames

List of Countries Toured

Television Appearances

Film Appearances

Video and Audio Recordings

Books by and about Marceau

Paintings, Drawings, and Lithographs

Awards and Honors

Marcel Marceau Links


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This page last updated 26 March 2004