by Augusta Mary Anne Holmès (1847 - 1903)
Translation © by Garrett Medlock

Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Ce jour là Paris s'éveillait
Dans la brume bleue et dorée,
Et sous la blanche arcade ouvrée
Un monde d'oiseaux pépiait,
Et nous parlions de mille choses
Qui ne nous intéressaient pas !
Du temps qu'il faisait, des lilas,
Du soleil, des passants, des roses ...

Pour avoir effleuré ta main
Je tremblais, la lèvre pâlie.
Vous jetiez des miettes d'oublie
Aux jolis moineaux du chemin.
Je gardais un digne maintien !
Vous sembliez la froideur même,
Et tout cela disait : « Je t'aime ! »
Maintenant nous le savons bien !


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 (Garrett Medlock) , "Memory", copyright © 2021, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Guy Laffaille [Guest Editor] , Johann Winkler

This text was added to the website: 2020-06-29
Line count: 16
Word count: 93

Language: English  after the French (Français) 
That day Paris awoke
In blue and gilded mist,
And beneath the white, finely-decorated arcade
A world of birds was chirping,
And we talked of a thousand things
Which did not interest us at all!
Of the weather, of lilies,
Of the sun, of passersby, of roses…

I was trembling to graze 
your hand, [your] pale lip.
You threw wafer crumbs
To the handsome sparrows of the path.
I kept a dignified bearing!
You seemed [to be] coolness itself,
And all this was saying: “I love you!”
Now we know [this] well!


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2021 by Garrett Medlock, (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: 2021-01-11
Line count: 16
Word count: 92