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I met the Bishop on the road And much said he and I. "Those breasts are flat and fallen now, Those veins must soon be dry; Live in a heavenly mansion, Not in some foul sty." "Fair and foul are near of kin, And fair needs foul," I cried. "My friends are gone, but that's a truth Nor grave nor bed denied, Learned in bodily [lowliness]1 And in the heart's pride. "A woman can be proud and stiff When on love intent; But Love has pitched his mansion in The place of excrement; For nothing can be sole or whole That has not been rent."
1 Grill: "loneliness"
- by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", appears in The Winding Stair, first published 1929 [author's text checked 1 time against a primary source]
Musical settings (art songs, Lieder, mélodies, (etc.), choral pieces, and other vocal works set to this text), listed by composer (not necessarily exhaustive):
- by Peter George Aston (b. 1938), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", published 1964 [ unaccompanied soprano ], from Five Songs of Crazy Jane [sung text not yet checked]
- by Stanley Grill (b. 1953), "Crazy Jane Talks with the Bishop", 1999, copyright © 2000 [ soprano, flute, violin, viola, cello and piano ], from Crazy Jane Sings, no. 6, confirmed with an online score [sung text checked 1 time]
- by Patrick Arthur Sheldon Hadley (1899 - 1973), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", 1958 [ soprano and harp ], from Crazy Jane, no. 6 [sung text not yet checked]
- by David Lidov (b. 1941), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", 1967, rev. 1970 [ voice and piano ], from Crazy Jane's songs [sung text not yet checked]
- by Ben Moore (b. 1960), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop" [ voice and piano ], from Eight Songs, no. 5 [sung text not yet checked]
- by Paul Paviour (b. 1931), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", copyright © 1969 [ soprano and piano ], from Crazy Jane, no. 5 [sung text not yet checked]
- by Douglas Young (b. 1947), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", 1970-3, copyright © 1969 [ soprano, tenor, bass clarinet, viola, violoncello ], from Realities [sung text not yet checked]
Available translations, adaptations or excerpts, and transliterations (if applicable):
- GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (Walter A. Aue) , "Die verrückte Jane spricht mit dem Bischof", copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
- GER German (Deutsch) [singable] (Walter A. Aue) , "De narrische Jane sogds dem Bischof eihne", Viennese dialect, copyright © 2010, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
Research team for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator] , Malcolm Wren [Guest Editor]
This text was added to the website: 2009-01-03
Line count: 18
Word count: 105
Ich traf den Bischof auf der Straß', Viel sprachen ich und er: "Die Adern trocknen Dir ja schon, Die Brüste hängen leer; Drum leb' Du in der Kirche Haus Und nicht im Schweinsstall mehr!" Ich schrie: "Das Reine braucht den Dreck, Die beiden sind verwandt. Die Freund' sind weg, doch Wahrheit ist's, Wohl Grab, wohl Bett bekannt, Aus Körpers Niedrigkeit erlernt Und Herzensstolz erkannt. "Ein Weib kann stolz und steifer stehn, Wenn Liebe in ihr brennt; Doch Liebe hat ihr Haus gebaut Im Grund von Exkrement; Und nichts kann ganz und einig sein, Es sei denn erst getrennt."
- Singable translation from English to German (Deutsch) copyright © 2010 by Walter A. Aue, (re)printed on this website with kind permission. To reprint and distribute this author's work for concert programs, CD booklets, etc., you must ask the copyright-holder(s) directly for permission. If you receive no response, you must consider it a refusal.
Walter A. Aue.  Contact: waue (AT) dal (DOT) caIf you wish to commission a new translation, please contact:
- a text in English by William Butler Yeats (1865 - 1939), "Crazy Jane talks with the Bishop", appears in The Winding Stair, first published 1929
This text was added to the website: 2010-03-26
Line count: 18
Word count: 98