Amours 1.181

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Jamais au cœur ne sera que je n’aye,
Soit que je tombe en l’oubli du cercueil,
Le souvenir du favorable accueil,
Qui reguarit et rengregea ma playe.
 
Cette beauté, pour qui cent morts j’essaye,
Me saluant d’un petit ris de l’œil,
Se presenta si benigne à mon dueil,
Qu’un seul regard de tous mes maux me paye.
 
Si donc le bien d’un esperé bon jour,
Plein de caresse, apres un long sejour,
En cent nectars mon esperance plonge,
 
Quel paradis m’apporteroit ce bien,
Si bras à bras d’un amoureux lien
Je la tenois tant seulement en songe ?
 
 
 
                                                                            Never in my heart will be that which I don’t have,
                                                                            Even if I fall into the oblivion of the coffin –
                                                                            The memory of favour and welcome
                                                                            Which cures and aggravates [Love’s] wound.
 
                                                                            That beauty for whom I dare a hundred deaths
                                                                            Greeted me with a little smile in her eye
                                                                            And showed herself so kind about my grief
                                                                            That one single glance repaid me for all my ills.
 
                                                                            If then the delight of a hoped-for greeting,
                                                                            So caressing, after a long wait
                                                                            Plunges my hopes into a hundred nectars,
 
                                                                            What paradise would that delight bring me
                                                                            If arm in arm in a lover’s embrace
                                                                            I could hold her – even if only in dreams? 
 
 
 
Sometimes I get an unexpected surprise from an unexpected direction: today’s is that this is the only poem I’ve uploaded so far – out of nearly 500! – that’s begun with “Jamais…” (‘Never…’) – which seems such an obvious opening word for a love-poet! That’s one of the many things I enjoy about Ronsard, his ability to surprise even by avoiding the obvious!  Blanchemain’s earlier version offers a number of variants, which combine to give us an attractive alternate version:
 
 
Jamais au cœur ne sera que je n’aye,
Soit que je tombe en l’oubli du cercueil,
Le souvenir du favorable accueil
Qui reguarit et rengregea ma playe ;
 
Car la beauté pour qui cent morts j’essaye,
Me saluant d’un petit ris de l’œil,
Si doucement satisfait à mon dueil,
Qu’un seul regard de tous mes maux me paye.
 
Si donc le bien d’un esperé bon-jour,
Plein de caresse, aprés un long sejour,
En cent nectars peut enivrer mon âme,
 
Quel paradis m’apporteroit les nuits,
Où se perdra le tout de mes ennuis,
Evanoui dans le sein de ma dame ?
 
 
 
                                                                            Never in my heart will be that which I don’t have,
                                                                            Even if I fall into the oblivion of the coffin –
                                                                            The memory of favour and welcome
                                                                            Which cures and aggravates [Love’s] wound,
 
                                                                            Because the beauty for whom I dare a hundred deaths
                                                                            Greeted me with a little smile in her eye
                                                                            And so gently met me in my grief
                                                                            That one single glance repaid me for all my ills.
 
                                                                            If then the delight of a hoped-for greeting,
                                                                            So caressing, after a long wait
                                                                            Can make my soul drunk with a hundred nectars,
 
                                                                            What paradise would night-time bring me
                                                                            In which all of my pains could be lost,
                                                                            Vanished in my lady’s breast?
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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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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