by (Paul) Jules Barbier (1825 - 1901)
Translation © by Garrett Medlock

Les saisons
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Une vierge aux doux yeux
Passe de rayons couronnée ;
Sur nos fronts plus joyeux
Semant les roses de l’année.
C’est, avec le jour,
Avril de retour,
C’est l’aube nouvelle
Du printemps trop court !
Ô saison d’amour,
Sois éternelle !
Ô saison d’amour, ah ! saison d’amour !

Elle fuit, sur ses pas
Marche une vierge moins parée,
Mais qui tient dans ses bras
Des épis, la moisson dorée.
L’été ! C’est l’été !
Qui dans sa bonté
Répand sur le monde
L’épi récolté.
Garde ta beauté,
Saison féconde,
Garde ta beauté, ah ! saison d’été !

Plus alerte en ses jeux
Une autre a bientôt pris sa place,
Enlaçant ses cheveux
Des pampres noués avec grâce.
C’est l’automne enfin
Qui rit du chagrin
Et sous une treille
Chante le raisin.
Arrête en chemin,
Saison vermeille,
Arrête en chemin, ah ! reste en chemin !

Mais l’automne a passé,
Pâle, vient une sœur nouvelle, 
Dont le front est glacé
Et qui pourtant est la plus belle.
Au seuil dévasté
De la pauvreté
L’hiver la rappelle
C’est le charité
Ah ! toute gaîté
Revit en elle !
C’est la charité, ah ! la charité !

Authorship

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) , "The seasons", copyright © 2020, (re)printed on this website with kind permission


Research team for this text: Laura Prichard [Guest Editor] , Garrett Medlock [Guest Editor]

This text was added to the website: 2016-12-14
Line count: 44
Word count: 195

The seasons
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
A virgin with sweet eyes
Passes with crowned rays,
Sowing the year’s roses
Upon our happier brows.
It is, with the day,
April again,
It is the new dawn
Of spring, too short!
Oh season of love,
May you be eternal!
Oh season of love, ah! season of love!

She flees, [and] in her footsteps
Walks a virgin less adorned,
But who holds in her arms
ears [of corn], the golden harvest.
Summer! It is summer!
Who in her bounty
Spreads over the world
The harvested ears.
Keep your beauty,
Fertile season,
Keep your beauty, ah! season of summer!

More lively in its games
Another soon took her place,
Enlacing its hair
With gracefully [woven grapevines].
It is autumn at last
Who laughs with melancholy,
And the grape[vine] sings
Beneath a trellis.
Rest on your way,
Vermilion season,
Rest on your way, ah! stop on your way!

But autumn has passed,
Pale, comes a new sister,
Whose brow is frozen
And who is yet the most beautiful.
On the devastated threshold
Of poverty
[Which] winter resembles,
Is charity
Ah! all gaiety
Lives again in her!
It is charity, ah! charity!

Authorship

  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2020 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.
    Contact: 

Based on

 

This text was added to the website: 2020-02-27
Line count: 44
Word count: 190