Chanson (Am. 2.61a)

Si je t’assauls, Amour, Dieu qui m’es trop cognu,
Pour neant en ton camp je feray des allarmes :
Tu es un vieil routier et bien appris aux armes,
Et moy jeune guerrier mal appris et tout nu.
Si je fuy devant toy, je ne sçaurois aller
En lieu que je ne sois devancé de ton aile :
Si je veux me cacher, l’amoureuse etincelle
Qui reluist en mon cœur me viendra deceler.
Si je veux m’embarquer tu es fils de la mer,
Si je men-vole au Ciel ton pouvoir y commande,
Si je tombe aux enfers ta puissance y est grande :
Ainsi maistre de tout, force m’est de t’aimer.
Or je t’aimeray donq, bien qu’envis de mon cœur,
Si c’est quelque amitié que d’aimer par contrainte :
« Toutefois (comme on dit) on voit souvent la crainte
« S’accompagner d’amour et l’amour de la peur.
                                                                            If I assault you, o god of Love so well-known to me,
                                                                            To no purpose shall I raise alarms in your camp :
                                                                            You are a real veteran, well-used to alarms,
                                                                            And I’m a young warrior, poorly-taught and completely unarmed.
                                                                            If I flee before you, I won’t be able to go
                                                                            Anywhere your wings won’t reach first;
                                                                            If I try to hide myself, the spark of love
                                                                            Which shines in my heart will expose me.
                                                                            If I decide to take ship, you are the son of the sea;
                                                                            If I fly to heaven, your power rules there;
                                                                            If I fall into hell, your might is great there:
                                                                            As you are master of all, I must love you.
                                                                            So, I shall love you, though against my heart’s desire,
                                                                            If it is a form of love to be forced to love:
                                                                            “You often,” as they say, “see anxiety
                                                                            Accompanied by love, and love by fear.”
Here is a chanson built on 4 quatrains – not quite a madrigal, but the differences are slight 🙂  Structurally, though, we have a three-part design (1-8, 9-12. 13-16), hence a more significant contrast with the sonnet-form Ronsard uses.
The version printed by Blanchemain only differs slightly: line 2 reads “En vain je te feray dans ton camp des allarmes“, word order rather than meaning changing; and in line 10, “Si je m’enleve au Ciel …” (‘If I lift myself to heaven…’).

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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