by Pierre de Ronsard (1524 - 1585)
Translation © by David Wyatt

Comme on voit sur la branche au mois de...
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
Comme on voit sur la branche au mois de May la rose
En sa belle jeunesse, en sa premiere fleur
Rendre le ciel jaloux de sa vive couleur,
Quand l'Aube de ses pleurs au poinct du jour l'arrose:
La grace dans sa fueille, et l'amour se repose,
Embasmant les jardins et les arbres d'odeur:
Mais batue ou de pluye, ou d'excessive ardeur,
Languissante elle meurt fueille à fueille déclose:
Ainsi en ta premiere et jeune nouveauté,
Quand la terre et le ciel honoroient ta beauté,
La Parque t'a tuée, et cendre tu reposes.
Pour obseques reçoy mes larmes et mes pleurs,
Ce vase plein de laict, ce panier plein de fleurs,
Afin que vif, et mort, ton corps ne soit que roses.

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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 (David Wyatt) , "On the death of Marie", copyright © 2012, (re)printed on this website with kind permission

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website: 2010-10-28
Line count: 14
Word count: 122

On the death of Marie
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
As you see the rose on the branch in May
In her lovely youth, with her first flower
Making the sky jealous of its bright colour
When the Dawn with his tears makes the sky pink1 at start of day:
Grace and love rest in her blooms
Perfuming gardens and trees with her scent
But then, battered by the rain or too much heat,
Fading she dies, stripped of petal after petal:
Like this you were in your first youth and novelty
When earth and heaven honoured your beauty;
But Fate killed you, and now you are just ashes.
As funeral rites, receive my tears and wailing,
This vase full of milk, this basket full of flowers
So that living or dead your body should be only roses.

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1 Translator's note: an untranslatable double meaning -- the Dawn "pours out" (arroser) his tears which also make the sky pink (ar-rose-er)


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © 2012 by David Wyatt, (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: 2012-05-22
Line count: 14
Word count: 128