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Four songs

Word count: 981

Song Cycle by Isaac Albéniz (1860 - 1909)

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1. In sickness and health [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE SPA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Jean-Pierre Granger) , "Pour le meilleur et pour le pire", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Alfredo García) , "En la salud y en la enfermedad", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


When you in sickness lie,
No more the field is green, nor blue the sky ;
No more invisible and lovely things
The forest haunt with songs and rustling wings ;
Back from my stricken sense the world recedes,
And beauty's garden is a patch of weeds.

Then can I [catch]1 in music's blithest tone
Nought but the closing cadence of a moan;
Then can I joy no more in sound unheard
Save in the silence of the written word;
The melodies that once could charm my ear
Forbode some final dissonance of fear.

Earth has no health, when health from you is fled;
No angel stands between the quick and death;
The awful unity of life and death
Is sacramental in your labouring breath;
And as I watch you I can hear Him call
Who is the king of Nothing or of All.

But ah! your nature surely cannot owe
To that grim tyrant such an overthrow;
You seem a creature of an alien strain
From force and fate, and unallied to pain;
Could you but meet their Master, little while
Would lapse ere you had won him to a smile.


View original text (without footnotes)
1 Albéniz: "hear"

Submitted by Alfredo García

1. Quand je te vois souffrir [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: French (Français) after the English

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Quand je te vois souffrir
J'oublie les verts jardins, le bleu du ciel,
Les êtres invisibles gracieux,
Dont l'incessant babil remplit les bois
Loin de mes sens perclus le monde fuit.
Les parcs en fleur me semblent désolés.

Lors, la plus douce mélodie n'est plus
Rien qu'une plainte qui monte et s'éteint.
Lors je me berce, non de sons rêvés
Mais du silence d'un poème lu ;
Les chants harmonieux que tant j'aimais
Ne sont que dissonances et terreurs !

le monde entier languit de ta douleur
Nul ange ne vient désarmer la mort,
Ô sœurs mystérieuses, Vie et Mort
Qui de vous chante dans ce souffle brûlant?
Je crois entendre l'appel de Celui
Qui est le roi du monde et du néant.

Mais toi, très chère, vas-tu succomber
Aux lois cruelles de ce dur tyran ?
Tu sembles n'être point soumise aux coups
Du sort jaloux, être affranchie du mal ;
S'il te voyait, le Maître tu saurais
Bientôt par ta jeunesse le désarmer !


Submitted by Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

2. Paradise regained [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE SPA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Jean-Pierre Granger) , "Le paradis retrouvé", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Alfredo García) , "El paraíso recobrado", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


There is a garden somewhere set,
Where singing birds abound,
And plashing founts the marble fret
With soft persistent sound;

Sorrow and sighing thence shall flee,
And none shall there intrude,
Save those who by simplicity
Have won beatitude.

The simple heart and simple mind,
Sincere in trust and troth,
From honest pleasure unconfin'd
For honest love unloth;

And there shall you be queen; but I,
Shall I find entrance too?
Or must I roam eternity,
To search, [sweetheart]1, for you?


View original text (without footnotes)
1 Albéniz: "sweet heart"

Submitted by Alfredo García

2. Le Paradis retrouvé [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: French (Français) after the English

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Dans un jardin, je ne sais où,
Sont mille oiseaux chanteurs,
Des eaux qui perlent en bruissant
Aux marbres des bassins.

Du mal, des peines, il est loin
Et nul n'y peut entrer
Sauf qui par la simplicité
Trouva le vrai bonheur.

Le cœur candide, l'esprit pur,
Sincère et confiant,
Ouvert aux joies des ingénus
Fervent du pur amour ;

Et là tu seras reine ; mais moi !
Pourrai-je pénétrer
Ou bien devrai-je errer sans fin,
Ma belle, et te chercher ?


Submitted by Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

3. The retreat [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE SPA

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Jean-Pierre Granger) , "La retraite", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Alfredo García) , "El retiro", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


I live no more in the outer world; for me
The rose is faded and the wine-cup dry;
Not that I fall to vainer apathy,
Nor sated with false pleasure, vainly sigh.

But having proved the world in all its ways,
With sense, with dignity, nor fond nor mad,
I find not there a single thing to praise,
No, nor a single thing to make me glad.

A staggering drunken animal I see,
Careering o'er bare mountains and bare plains,
Intent upon its own absurdity,
And loving pleasure only for its pains;

That is the world, ah, friend, let us retire
In to the spacious chamber of our mind
To sit and talk before the cosy fire
And listen to the winter, wailing wind!


Submitted by Alfredo García

3. Le refuge [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: French (Français) after the English

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J'ai renoncé à ce monde vain. Pour moi
La coupe est vide, le rosier fané !
Pourtant mon cœur n'est pas indifférent,
N'est point blasé par les plaisirs trompeurs.

Du monde j'ai goûté les biens, les maux,
Mon cœur a tout jugé loyalement,
Et rien ne m'a séduit, ne m'a souri,
Tout m'a paru mesquin, m'a désolé.

J'ai vu tituber des êtres vils, flétris,
Par les déserts farouches, par les monts
Ils poursuivaient leur folle ambition,
Et les plaisirs qui causent tous les maux.

Tel est le monde, ami, vaut-il mieux
Vivre en nous-mêmes, loin des noirs soucis
Tout deux causer autour d'un gai foyer
Quand au dehors la bise gémira ?


Submitted by Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

4. Amor, summa injuria [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: English

Translation(s): FRE FRE SPA

List of language codes

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Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):

  • FRE French (Français) (Jean-Pierre Granger) , "Amor summa injuria", copyright © 2009, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Alfredo García) , "Amor, summa injuria", copyright © 2008, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Forgive me for the wrong I did,
To make you love me. Well I know
In that injurious hour were hid
Long hours of woe.

If judgment be pronounced on sin
Hereafter, then shall I be lost,
Because your love I [dared]1 to win
At such a cost;

At such a cost to you; ah, me,
How often have your eyes o'erbrimmed
By alien infelicity
Unjustly dimm'd,

When from my heart, without a sign,
Some random lightning of unrest,
Some folly or misword of mine,
Has pierced your breast.

Forgive me, dear! If you forgive,
Methinks I shall not wholly die;
For Love will surely let me live,
If you comply.


View original text (without footnotes)
1 Albéniz: "dare"

Submitted by Alfredo García

4. Amour, souffrance [ sung text checked 1 time]

Language: French (Français) after the English

Authorship


Based on

See other settings of this text.


Pardonne : quand tu m'as aimé
Je fus coupable, oui, je sais :
De cet instant fatal sont nés
Des maux sans fin.

Si plus tard on nous juge pour
nos fautes, je serai perdu,
Mais ton amour, je l'ai voulu,
Fût-ce à tel prix ;

Fût-ce à tel prix pour toi. hélas !
Plus d'une fois j'ai vu tes yeux
En larmes, je t'ai vue pleurer
Injustement,

Quand de mon cœur, insoupçonné
Un trouble éclair soudain jailli.
Que sais-je ? une folie, un mot,
Perçait ton cœur.

Pardonne, aimée ! Pardonne, aimée ; de ton pardon
Peut-être ne mourrais-je point :
L'amour me gardera en vie,
Si c'est ton vœu !


Submitted by Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor]

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