Un prêté pour un rendu

Song Cycle by (Edward) Benjamin Britten (1913 - 1976)

Word count: 609
Original language: Tit for tat
1. A Song of Enchantment [sung text checked 1 time]
A Song of Enchantment I sang me there,
In a green-green wood, by waters fair,
Just as the words came up to me
I sang it under the wild wood tree. 

Widdershins turned I, singing it low,
Watching the wild birds come and go;
No cloud in the deep dark blue to be seen
Under the thick-thatched branches green. 

Twilight came; silence came;
The planet of Evening's silver flame;
By darkening paths I wandered through
Thickets trembling with drops of dew. 

But the music is lost and the words are gone
Of the song I sang as I sat alone,
Ages and ages have fallen on me -
On the wood and the pool and the elder tree.

Authorship

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Un chant d'enchantement", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Harald Krebs) , "Ein Lied der Verzauberung", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Ein verwunschenes Lied", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Confirmed with Peacock Pie. A Book of Rhymes by Walter de la Mare, London: Constable & Co. Ltd., [1920], p. 171.


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

by Walter De la Mare (1873 - 1956)
1. Un chant d'enchantement
Je chantais là un chant d'enchantement,
Dans un bois tout vert, près de jolies eaux,
Juste comme les mots me venaient
Je le chantais sous l'arbre du bois sauvage.

Dos au soleil, chantant tout bas,
Regardant les oiseaux sauvages aller et venir ;
Aucun nuage dans le ciel bleu foncé en vue
Sous les branches vertes bien épaisses.

Le soir tomba ; le silence vint ;
La planète d'argent du soir se mit à briller ;
Par des chemins sombres, je me promenais à travers
Des fourrés tremblant avec des gouttes de rosée.

Mais la musique est perdue et les mots sont partis
Du chant que je chantais assis seul,
Les années, l'une après l'autre, sont tombées sur moi,
Sur le bois, sur l'étang et du vieil arbre.

Authorship

  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
    Contact: 

Based on


Text added to the website: 2011-06-29 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:27
Line count: 16
Word count: 128

Translation © by Guy Laffaille
There is a wind where the rose was;
Cold rain where sweet grass was;
And clouds like sheep
Stream o'er the steep
Grey skies where the lark was. 

Nought gold where your hair was;
Nought warm where your hand was;
But phantom, forlorn,
Beneath the thorn,
Your ghost where your face was. 

Sad winds where your voice was;
Tears, tears where my heart was;
And ever with me,
Child, ever with me,
Silence where hope was.

Authorship

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Automne", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Herbst", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
by Walter De la Mare (1873 - 1956)
2. Automne
Il y a du vent là où était la rose ;
De la pluie froide là où était l'herbe douce ;
Et des nuages comme des moutons
Fument au dessus des raides
Cieux gris là où était l'alouette.

Rien de doré là où était ta chevelure ;
Rien de tiède là où était ta main ;
Qu'un fantôme, une personne désespérée,
Sous les épines,
Ton spectre là où était ton visage.

Des vents tristes là où était ta voix ;
Des larmes, des larmes là où était mon cœur ;
Et toujours avec moi,
Mon enfant, toujours avec moi,
Le silence là où était l'espoir.

Authorship

  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
    Contact: 

Based on


Text added to the website: 2011-06-29 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:27
Line count: 15
Word count: 105

Translation © by Guy Laffaille
Slowly, silently, now the moon
Walks the night in her silver shoon;
This way, and that, she peers and sees
Silver fruit upon silver trees;
One by one the casements catch 
Her beams beneath the silvery thatch;
Couched in his kennel, like a log,
With paws of silver sleeps the dog;
[From their shadowy cote the white breasts peep
Of doves in a silver-feathered sleep]1
A harvest mouse goes scampering by,
With silver claws, and silver eye;
And moveless fish in the water gleam,
By silver reeds in a silver stream.

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 omitted by Bachlund, Britten, Duke, Gibbs.

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
by Walter De la Mare (1873 - 1956)
3. Argent
Lentement, silencieusement, maintenant la lune
Marche dans la nuit dans ses souliers d'argent ;
De ci, de là, elle regarde et voit
Les fruits d'argent sur les arbres d'argent ;
Un par un, les croisées attrapent
Ses rayons sous le chaume argenté ;
Couché dans sa niche, comme une souche,
Avec des pattes d'argent dort le chien.


Une souris des moissons trottine par ci, par là,
Avec des griffes d'argent, et des yeux d'argent ;
Et les poissons immobiles brillent dans l'eau,
Dans les roseaux d'argent dans un flot d'argent.

Authorship

  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
    Contact: 

Based on

Translation of title "Silver" = "Argent"


Text added to the website: 2011-06-26 00:00:00
Last modified: 2017-10-19 22:15:21
Line count: 12
Word count: 90

Translation © by Guy Laffaille
Dark is the night,
The fire burns faint and low,
Hours -- days -- years,
Into grey ashes go;
I strive to read,
But sombre is the glow. 

Thumbed are the pages,
And the print is small;
Mocking the winds
That from the darkness call;
Feeble the fire that lends
Its light withal. 

O ghost, draw nearer;
Let thy shadowy hair
Blot out the pages
That we cannot share;
Be ours the one last leaf
By Fate left bare! 

Let's Finis scrawl,
And then Life's book put by;
Turn each to each
In all simplicity:
Ere the last flame is gone
To warm us by.

Authorship

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Veille", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Wache", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
by Walter De la Mare (1873 - 1956)
4. Veille
Sombre est la nuit,
Le feu brûle faiblement, doucement,
Après des heures, des jours, des années,
Se transforme en cendres grises ;
Je m'efforce de lire,
Mais la lueur est sombre.

Les pages sont écornées
Et c'est écrit petit ;
Les vents moqueurs
Appellent depuis l'obscurité ;
Le feu faible qui accorde
En outre sa lumière.

Ô esprit, viens plus près ;
Que ta chevelure vague
Masque les pages
Que nous ne pouvons pas partager ;
Que notre dernière page soit
Laissée vide par le destin !

Gribouillons Fin,
Et puis mettons de côté le livre de la vie ;
Tournons-nous l'un vers l'autre
En toute simplicité :
Avant que ne parte la dernière flamme
Pour nous réchauffer.

Authorship

  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
    Contact: 

Based on


Text added to the website: 2011-06-29 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:27
Line count: 24
Word count: 118

Translation © by Guy Laffaille
5. Tit for tat [sung text checked 1 time]
Have you been catching [of]1 fish, Tom Noddy? 
  Have you snared a weeping hare? 
Have you whistled "No Nunny" and gunned a poor bunny,
  Or blinded a bird of the air? 

Have you trod like a murderer through the green woods,
  Through the dewy deep dingles and glooms,
While every small creature screamed shrill to Dame Nature
  "He comes - and he comes!"? 

Wonder I very much do, Tom Noddy,
  If ever, when [you are a-roam]2,
An Ogre from space will stoop a lean face,
  And lug you home: 

Lug you home over his fence, Tom Noddy,
  Of thorn-sticks nine yards high,
With your bent knees strung round his old iron gun
  And your head a dan-dangling by: 

And hang you up stiff on a hook, Tom Noddy,
  From a stone-cold pantry shelf,
Whence your eyes will glare in an empty stare,
  Till [you're]3 cooked yourself!

Authorship

See other settings of this text.

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

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Un prêté pour un rendu", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Wie du mir, so ich dir", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

View original text (without footnotes)
1 omitted by Britten.
2 Britten: "off you roam"
3 Britten: "you are"

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]
by Walter De la Mare (1873 - 1956)
5. Un prêté pour un rendu
As-tu attrapé du poisson, Tom Noddy ?
As-tu pris au piège un lièvre qui pleurait ?
As-tu sifflé "Non, mamie" et tiré un pauvre lapin,
Ou rendu aveugle un oiseau des airs ?

As-tu marché comme un assassin à travers les bois verts,
À travers les vallées et les ténèbres profondes et couvertes de rosée,
Tandis que toutes les petits êtres lançaient des cris stridents à Dame Nature
"Il arrive, il arrive !" ?

Je serais vraiment émerveillé, Tom Noddy,
Si jamais, quand tu vagabondes,
Un ogre venu de l'espace inclinait sa face maigre
Et t'entraînait chez lui :

T'entraînait chez lui au-dessus de sa barrière, Tom Noddy,
De branches d'épineux, de neuf mètres de haut,
Avec tes genoux pliés attachés autour de son vieux fusil en fer
Et ta tête se bal-balançant :

Et t'aurait pendu bien raide à un crochet, Tom Noddy,
À une étagère du garde-manger en pierre froide
D'où tes yeux vides lanceraient des regards furieux
Jusqu'à ce que tu sois cuit toi-même !

Authorship

  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you may ask the copyright-holder(s) directly or ask us; we are authorized to grant permission on their behalf. Please provide the translator's name when contacting us.
    Contact: 

Based on


Text added to the website: 2011-06-29 00:00:00
Last modified: 2014-06-16 10:04:27
Line count: 20
Word count: 168

Translation © by Guy Laffaille