by Walter De la Mare (1873 - 1956)
Translation © by Guy Laffaille

A Song of Enchantment
Language: English 
Available translation(s): FRE GER GER
A Song of Enchantment I sang me there,
In a green-green wood, by waters fair,
Just as the words came up to me
I sang it under the wild wood tree. 

Widdershins turned I, singing it low,
Watching the wild birds come and go;
No cloud in the deep dark blue to be seen
Under the thick-thatched branches green. 

Twilight came; silence came;
The planet of Evening's silver flame;
By darkening paths I wandered through
Thickets trembling with drops of dew. 

But the music is lost and the words are gone
Of the song I sang as I sat alone,
Ages and ages have fallen on me -
On the wood and the pool and the elder tree.

Confirmed with Peacock Pie. A Book of Rhymes by Walter de la Mare, London: Constable & Co. Ltd., [1920], p. 171.


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):

  • FRE French (Français) (Guy Laffaille) , "Un chant d'enchantement", copyright © 2011, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Harald Krebs) , "Ein Lied der Verzauberung", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission
  • GER German (Deutsch) (Bertram Kottmann) , "Ein verwunschenes Lied", copyright © 2013, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 16
Word count: 118

Un chant d'enchantement
Language: French (Français)  after the English 
Je chantais là un chant d'enchantement,
Dans un bois tout vert, près de jolies eaux,
Juste comme les mots me venaient
Je le chantais sous l'arbre du bois sauvage.

Dos au soleil, chantant tout bas,
Regardant les oiseaux sauvages aller et venir ;
Aucun nuage dans le ciel bleu foncé en vue
Sous les branches vertes bien épaisses.

Le soir tomba ; le silence vint ;
La planète d'argent du soir se mit à briller ;
Par des chemins sombres, je me promenais à travers
Des fourrés tremblant avec des gouttes de rosée.

Mais la musique est perdue et les mots sont partis
Du chant que je chantais assis seul,
Les années, l'une après l'autre, sont tombées sur moi,
Sur le bois, sur l'étang et du vieil arbre.


  • Translation from English to French (Français) copyright © 2011 by Guy Laffaille, (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: 2011-06-29
Line count: 16
Word count: 128