Attention! Some of this material is not in the public domain.
It is illegal to copy and distribute our copyright-protected material without permission. It is also illegal to reprint copyright texts or translations without the name of the author or translator.
To inquire about permissions and rates, contact Emily Ezust at
If you wish to reprint translations, please make sure you include the names of the translators in your email. They are below each translation.
Note: You must use the copyright symbol © when you reprint copyright-protected material.
Ciel! les colonies Dénicheur de nids Un oiseau sans ailes Que fait Paul sans elle? Où est Virginie? Elle rajeunit Ciel des colonies, Paul et Virginie Pour lui et pour elle, C'était une ombrelle Ciel! les colonies.
- by Raymond Radiguet (1903 - 1923) [author's text not yet checked against a primary source]
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) , "Paul and Virginia", copyright © 2019, (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: 11
Word count: 37
Heaven, the colonies. Digger of nests A bird without wings What does Paul do without her? Where is Virginia? She rejuvenates Heaven of the colonies, Paul and Virginia For him and for her, It was a parasol Heaven! the colonies.
Title - These children are fatherless and fall in love at an early age.
Line 1 - the colonies, i.e., Maritius
This poem is from Radiguet’s only collection of poetry, Les joues en feu (1920), and refers to a Rousseau-influenced novel called Paul et Virginie (1788) by Bernadin de Saint-Pierre (1737-1814), set in Mauritius, then a French colony.
Poulenc and Radiguet were friends as youth. About this song, the composer wrote, “These few lines of Radiguet have always has a magical savor for me. In 1920 I set them to music. One rainy day a feeling of great melancholy helped me to find the tone that I believed to be right. I think it useful to bear in mind how modern poems are placed on the stage. It was this that gave me the idea of respecting the blank space in the printing of the poem before “Elle rajeunit” [bars 11-12]. If the tempo is not maintained strictly throughout, this small song, made of a little music, of much tenderness and of one silence, is ruined.
- Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2019 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.
This text was added to the website: 2019-12-03
Line count: 11
Word count: 40