Translation © by Peter Low

Ils se disent, ma colombe
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG SPA
Ils se disent, ma colombe,
Que tu rêves, morte encore,
Sous la pierre d'une tombe :
[Mais pour l'âme qui t'adore]1,
Tu t'éveilles [ranimée]2,
Ô pensive bien-aimée !

Par les blanches nuits d'étoiles,
Dans la brise qui murmure,
Je caresse tes longs voiles,
Ta mouvante chevelure,
Et tes ailes demi-closes
Qui voltigent sur les roses !

Ô délices ! je respire
Tes divines tresses blondes !
Ta voix pure, cette lyre,
Suit la vague sur les ondes,
Et, suave, les effleure,
Comme un cygne qui se pleure !

G. Schubert sets stanzas 1, 3

About the headline (FAQ)

View original text (without footnotes)

Confirmed with Théodore de Banville, Poésies complètes: Les exilés: Odelettes, Améthystes, Rimes dorées, Rondels, Les Princesses, Trente-Six Ballades Joyeuses, Paris, G. Charpentier et Cie, 1887, page 129.

1 Gounod: "Non, tu vis que je t'adore!"; G. Schubert: "tu vis, car je t'adore!"
2 Hahn: "réanimée"


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 (Peter Low) , no title, copyright © 2002, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • SPA Spanish (Español) (Raedcavid De Jesús) , "La enamorada", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Sharon Krebs [Guest Editor] , Erkki Pullinen

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 18
Word count: 88

They say, my dove
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
They say, my dove,
that you are still dead and dreaming
beneath a tombstone;
but you awaken, revived,
for the soul that adores you,
oh pensive beloved!

Through the sleepless nights,
in the murmuring breeze,
I caress your long veils,
your swaying hair
and your half-closed wings
which flutter among the roses.

Oh delights!  I breathe
your divine blond tresses!
Your pure voice, a kind of lyre,
moves on the swell of the waters
and touches them gently, suavely,
like a lamenting swan!

About the headline (FAQ)

Translations of titles:
"L'âme de la morte" = "The soul of the dead one"
"L'âme d'un ange" = "The soul of an angel"
"L'énamourée" = "The beloved one"


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2002 by Peter Low, (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 between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 18
Word count: 83