Odes 4, 14

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Le petit enfant Amour
Cueilloit des fleurs à l’entour
D’une ruche, où les avettes
Font leurs petites logettes.
 
Comme il les allait cueillant,
Une avette sommeillant
Dans le fond d’une fleurette
Lui piqua la main tendrette.
 
Sitost que piqué se vit,
Ah ! je suis perdu, ce dit ;
Et, s’en courant vers sa mère,
Lui monstra sa playe amère :
 
Ma mère, voyez ma main,
Ce disoit Amour, tout plein
De pleurs, voyez quelle enflure
M’a fait une esgratignure !
 
Alors Venus se sou-rit
Et en le baisant le prit,
Puis sa main luy a soufflée
Pour guarir sa plaie enflée.
 
Qui t’a, dy-moi, faux garçon,
Blessé de telle façon ?
Sont-ce mes Graces riantes,
De leurs aiguilles poignantes ?
 
Nenny, c’est un serpenteau,
Qui vole au printemps nouveau
Avecques deux ailerettes
Çà et là sur les fleurettes.
 
Ah ! vrayment je le cognois,
Dit Venus ; les villageois
De la montagne d’Hymette
Le surnomment Mélissette [or, une avette].
 
Si doncques un animal
Si petit fait tant de mal,
Quand son halesne espoinçonne
La main de quelque personne,
 
Combien fais-tu de douleurs
Au prix de luy, dans les cœurs
De ceux contre qui tu jettes
Tes homicides sagettes ?
 
 
                                                                                                The little child Love [Cupid]
                                                                                                Was picking flowers around
                                                                                                A hive, where the bees
                                                                                                Make their little homes.
 
                                                                                                As he went picking them
                                                                                                A sleepy bee
                                                                                                In the heart of a little flower
                                                                                                Stung him on his soft little hand.
 
                                                                                                As soon as he felt himself stung
                                                                                                He said “Oh, I’m done for!”
                                                                                                And running towards his mother
                                                                                                Showed her his painful wound.
 
                                                                                                “Mother, look at my hand” –
                                                                                                So said Love, full
                                                                                                Of tears, “look at the swelling
                                                                                                That this scratch has given me.”
 
                                                                                                Well, Venus smiled to herself
                                                                                                And, kissing him, picked him up
                                                                                                And blew on his hand
                                                                                                To cure the swollen wound.
 
                                                                                                “Who was it, tell me, you naughty boy
                                                                                                Who wounded you in such a way?
                                                                                                Was it my laughing Graces
                                                                                                With their sharp needles?”
 
                                                                                                “No, no, it was a sort of snake
                                                                                                Which flies at the beginning of spring
                                                                                                With its two tiny wings
                                                                                                Here and there on the flowers.”
 
                                                                                                “Ah, now I recognise it”
                                                                                                Said Venus, “The villagers
                                                                                                Of Mount Hymettus
                                                                                                Call it Honey-Sweet [or, a bee]
 
                                                                                                If such a small animal
                                                                                                Does so much harm
                                                                                                When his sting pricks
                                                                                                Someone’s hand
 
                                                                                                How much pain do you cause
                                                                                                In competition with him, in the hearts
                                                                                                Of those at whom you shoot
                                                                                                Your little killer-arrows?”
 
 
 Mount Hymettus is the mountain overlooking Athens, famous for its honey since Aesop’s Fables.
 
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About fattoxxon

Who am I? Lover of all sorts of music - classical, medieval, world (anything from Africa), world-classical (Uzbek & Iraqi magam for instance), and virtually anything that won't be on the music charts... Lover of Ronsard's poetry (obviously) and of sonnets in general. Reader of English, French, Latin & other literature. And who is Fattoxxon? An allusion to an Uzbek singer - pronounce it Patahan, with a very plosive 'P' and a throaty 'h', as in 'khan')

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