Translation © by Michael P Rosewall

Les colombes
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Sur le coteau, là-bas où sont les tombes,
Un beau palmier, comme un panache vert
Dresse sa tête, où le soir les colombes
Viennent nicher et se mettre à couvert.

Mais le matin elles quittent les branches;
Comme un collier qui s'égrène, on les voit
S'éparpiller dans l'air bleu, toutes blanches,
Et se poser plus loin sur quelque toit.

Mon âme est l'arbre où tous les soirs comme elles,
De blancs essaims de folles visions
Tombent des cieux, en palpitant des ailes,
Pour s'envoler dès les premiers rayons.


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):

  • CZE Czech (Čeština) (Jaroslav Vrchlický) , "Holubi"
  • ENG English (Michael P Rosewall) , "The doves", copyright © 2020, (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: 12
Word count: 88

The doves
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
There, on the hill, where there are tombs,
A beautiful palm tree, like a green plume,
Lifts its head, where at night the doves
Make their nests and seek shelter.

But, in the morning, they leave its branches;
Like a necklace unstrung, one sees them
Scattering in the blue air, all white,
And alighting far off upon a roof.

My soul is the tree where every night, as they,
White swarms of wild visions come
Falling from the heavens, fluttering their wings,
Only to fly away at morning’s first rays.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2020 by Michael P Rosewall, (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.

Based on:


This text was added to the website: 2020-11-11
Line count: 12
Word count: 90