No better words than Charles Baudelaire’s poem from the Flowers of Evil
“To a Passer-by”
The deafening street roared on. Full, slim, and grand
In mourning and majestic grief, passed down
A woman, lifting with a stately hand
And swaying the black borders of her gown;
Noble and swift, her leg with statues matching;
I drank, convulsed, out of her pensive eye,
A livid sky where hurricanes were hatching,
Sweetness that charms, and joy that makes one die.
A lighting-flash — then darkness! Fleeting chance
Whose look was my rebirth — a single glance!
Through endless time shall I not meet with you?
Far off! too late! or never! — I not knowing
Who you may be, nor you where I am going —
You, whom I might have loved, who know it too!
— Roy Campbell, Poems of Baudelaire (New York: Pantheon Books, 1952)
Photo Hugh Ardoin The Londoners Gallery