by Michel Veber (1896 - 1965), as Nino
Translation © by Laura Prichard

Le bengali
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
J'avais le plus joli de tous les bengalis; 
Il chantait tout le jour 
Mille chansons d'amour, 
Cui, cui, cui, cui, cui, cui. 
Quand il n'était pas sage, 
Je mettais dans sa cage 
Un morceau de pain sec 
Pour qu'il y fit son bec. 
Mais quand il était mignon 
Je lui donnais du bon mouron, 
Du millet, du chènevis, 
Et même un morceau de biscuit, 
Cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit. 
Mais tout passe, tout lasse, tout casse. 
Bengali tomba dans la casserole 
où cuisait la soupe aux choux 
Et nous l'avons mangé tout cuit, 
Cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit.

Authorship

Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive)

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

  • ENG English (Laura Prichard) , "The bengal finch", copyright © 2016, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 18
Word count: 100

The bengal finch
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
I had the prettiest of all bengali finches; 
He sang all day 
A thousand songs of love 
Cui, cui, cui, cui, cui, cui. 
When it was not well behaved, 
I put in his cage 
A piece of dry bread 
Upon which to sharpen its beak. 
But when he was cute 
I gave him good birdseed, 
Some millet, some hemp, 
And even a piece of biscuit, 
Cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit. 
But everything passes, everything wears out, everything breaks. 
The bengal finch fell into the casserole dish
when I was cooking the cabbage soup
And we ate it all cooked 
Cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit, cuit.

Translator's notes:
Line 13 - a play on the sound of the bird, echoing the last syllable of the word “biscuit”
Line 18 - a play on the sound of the bird, echoing the word “cooked”

Authorship

  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2016 by Laura Prichard, (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.
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Based on

 

This text was added to the website: 2016-04-14
Line count: 18
Word count: 106