by Louis Pomey (1835 - 1901)
Translation © by Barbara Miller

Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Le ciel est clair et l'air est doux, 
Tout rit, tout jase autour de nous;
Toi seul, ô mon pauvre oiselet,
Toi seul languis triste et muet.

Le printemps qui tout ranime
De nos monts verdit la cime;
De la brise matinale 
Un parfum d'amour s'exhale, 
Aux champs, dans le secret des bois,
Tout ce qui vit dit à la fois 
Le mot que la nuit dit au jour, 
Le mot charmant, le mot d'amour. 
Ah! Assise loin de son troupeau, 
Et le suivant d'un oeil rêveur,
Chloé ne sait quel feu nouveau
Soudain s'allume dans son coeur.
Mais toi l'on ne peut te charmer,
Tu fuis le doux plaisir d'aimer. 
Celui de qui tu plains les maux
Gémit captif sous les barreaux,
Adieu! l'amour et la gaîté 
Pour qui n'a pas la liberté.


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 (Barbara Miller) , "The little bird", copyright © 2004, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: John Versmoren

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 22
Word count: 134

The little bird
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
The sky is bright and the air is sweet,
Everything laughs, everything chatters around us;
You alone, you alone, o my poor little bird
You alone languish sad and mute.

The springtime which brings everything back to life
Of our mountains makes green the peaks;
Of the morning breeze
A perfume of love breathes out
To the fields, in the secrecy of the woods,
Everything that lives says at once
The word, the word that the night says to the day.
The charming word, the word of love
Ah! Seated far from her flock,
And following it with the eye of a dreamer,
Chloe does not know what fire, what new fire
Suddenly lights itself within her heart
But you, one cannot charm.
You flee the sweet pleasure of loving.
Him whose pains you pity
Moans, captive behind bars,
Goodbye! Goodbye! love and gaity
For him who has no liberty.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2004 by Barbara Miller, (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: 2004-04-21
Line count: 22
Word count: 150