by Arthur Justin Léon Leclère (1874 - 1966), as Tristan Klingsor
Translation © by Emily Ezust

Chat, chat, chat
Language: French (Français) 
Available translation(s): ENG
   Chat, chat, chat,
Chat noir, chat blanc, chat gris,
   Charmant chat couché,
   Chat, chat, chat
N'entends-tu pas les souris
Danser à trois les entrechats
   Sur le plancher?

Le bourgeois ronfle dans son lit
De son bonnet de coton coiffé
Et la lune regarde à la vitre:
Dansez souris, dansez jolies,
   Dansez vite,
En remuant vos fines queues de fées.

Dansez sans musique tout à votre aise
   À pas menus et drus
Au clair de la lune qui vient de se lever,
Courez: les sergents de ville dans la rue
   Font les cent pas sur le pavé
   Et tous les chats du vieux Paris
   Dorment sur leur chaise,
Chats blancs, chats noirs, ou chats gris.

About the headline (FAQ)


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 (Emily Ezust) , "Cat song", copyright ©

Researcher for this text: Emily Ezust [Administrator]

This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 21
Word count: 115

Cat song
Language: English  after the French (Français) 
Cat, cat, chat,
black cat, white cat, gray cat,
charming, reclining cat -
cat, cat, cat,
do you not hear the mice
dancing and weaving in threes
on the floor?

The burgher is snoring in his bed
beneath a cap of cotton,
and the moon is gazing through the window:
dance, my mice - dance, my pretty mice,
dance quickly,
flicking your fine, magical tails.

Dance without music, completely at ease,
to the sound of your light steps;
in the light of the moon that has just risen,
run! the soldiers of the village in the street
are marching about the town;
and all the cats of old Paris
are asleep in their chairs:
white cats, black cats, or gray cats.


  • Translation from French (Français) to English copyright © by Emily Ezust

    Emily Ezust permits her translations to be reproduced without prior permission for printed (not online) programs to free-admission concerts only, provided the following credit is given:

    Translation copyright © by Emily Ezust,
    from the LiederNet Archive --

    For any other purpose, please write to the e-mail address below to request permission and discuss possible fees.

Based on


This text was added to the website between May 1995 and September 2003.
Line count: 21
Word count: 121