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Five Spring Songs

Song Cycle by Geoffrey Bush (1920 - 1998)

1. Diaphenia [sung text not yet checked]

Diaphenia, like the daffadowndilly,
White as the sun, fair as the lily,
  Heigh ho, how I do love thee!
I do love thee as my lambs
Are belovèd of their dams:
  How blest were I if thou would'st prove me.

Diaphenia, like the spreading roses,
That in thy sweets all sweets [incloses]1,
  Fair sweet, how I do love thee!
I do love thee as each flower
Loves the sun's life-giving power;
  For dead, thy breath to life might move me.

Diaphenia, like to all things blessèd,
When all thy praises are expressèd,
  Dear joy, how I do love thee!
As the birds do love the spring,
Or the bees their careful king, --
  Then in requite, sweet virgin, love me!

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Tim Palmer) , copyright © 2017, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 Argento, Browne, Moeran, and Stanford use the spelling "encloses"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

2. Lay a Garland on my Hearse [sung text not yet checked]

Lay a garland on my hearse,
  Of the dismal yew,
Maidens, willow branches [bear]1,
  Say I died true.

My love was false, but I was firm
  [From my hour of birth;]2
Upon my buried body lie
  Lightly, [gentle]3 earth.

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

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1 Pearsall, A. Taylor: "wear"
2 omitted by Pearsall and A. Taylor
3 Pearsall, A. Taylor: "thou gentle"

Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

3. What thing is Love? [sung text not yet checked]

What thing is love? I prithee tell.
It is a prick, it is a sting,
It is a pretty, pretty thing;
It is a fire, it is a coal,
Whose flame creeps in at every hole;
And as my wit can best devise,
Love's dwelling lies in ladies' eyes.

Authorship:

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]

4. Weep you No More Sad Fountains [sung text not yet checked]

Weep you no more, sad fountains;
  What need [you]1 flow so fast?
Look how the snowy mountains
  Heaven's sun doth gently waste!
    But my sun's heavenly eyes
      View not your weeping,
      That now lies sleeping,
    [Softly now, softly]2 lies
        Sleeping.

Sleep is a reconciling,
  A rest that peace begets;
Doth not the sun rise smiling
  When fair at [e'en]3 he sets?
    Rest you, then, rest, sad eyes!
      Melt not in weeping,
      While she lies sleeping,
    [Softly now, softly]2 lies
        Sleeping.

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

  • GER German (Deutsch) (Julia Hamann) , "Tränen", copyright © 2007, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 van Dieren: "ye"
2 van Dieren, Holst, Moeran: "Softly, now softly"
3 Parry: "eve"; Moeran, Quilter, van Dieren: "even"; Holst: "ev'n"

Researcher for this text: Ted Perry

5. Now the Lusty Spring is Seen [sung text not yet checked]

Now the lusty spring is seen ; 
    Golden yellow, gaudy blue, 
    Daintily invite the view : 
Everywhere on every green 
Roses blushing as they blow 
    And enticing men to pull, 
Lilies whiter than the snow, 
    Woodbines of sweet honey full: 
        All love’s emblems, and all cry, 
        ‘Ladies, if not pluck’d, we die.’ 

Yet the lusty spring hath stay’d ; 
    Blushing red and purest white 
    Daintily to love invite 
Every woman, every maid : 
Cherries kissing as they grow, 
    And inviting men to taste, 
Apples even ripe below, 
    Winding gently to the waist : 
        All love’s emblems, and all cry, 
        ‘Ladies, if not pluck’d, we die.’

Authorship:

Researcher for this text: Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]
Total word count: 392