Tag Archives: Marullus

Chanson (2:64a)

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Harsoir, Marie, en prenant maugré toy
Un doux baiser acoudé sur ta couche,
Sans y penser je laissay dans ta bouche
L’ame en baisant qui s’enfuit de moy.
 
Comme j’estois sur le poinct de mourir,
Et que mon ame amusée à te suivre,
Ne revenoit mon corps faire revivre,
Je renvoyay mon cœur pour la querir.
 
Mais mon cœur pris de ton œil blandissant
Aima trop mieux estre chez toy (Madame)
Que retourner, et non-plus qu’à mon ame
Ne luy chalut de mon corps perissant.
 
Lors si je n’eusse en te baisant ravy
De ton haleine une vapeur ardente,
Qui depuis seule (en lieu de l’ame absente
Et de mon cœur) de vie m’a servy :
 
Voulant harsoir mon tourment appaiser,
Par qui sans ame et sans cœur je demeure,
Je fusse mort entre tes bras à l’heure
Que maugré toy je te pris un baiser.
 
 
 
                                                                            Yestereve, Marie, in taking despite you
                                                                            A sweet kiss while leaning on your couch,
                                                                            Without thinking of it I left in your mouth
                                                                            My soul, which as we kissed ran away from me.
 
                                                                            As I was on the point of dying,
                                                                            And since my soul, amused to be following you,
                                                                            Would not return to make my body live again,
                                                                            I sent my heart off to seek it.
 
                                                                            But my heart, captured by your flattering eyes,
                                                                            Liked being with you too much, my lady,
                                                                            To return, and no more than my soul
                                                                            Did it care about my dying body.
 
                                                                            So – if I had not as I kissed you seized
                                                                            From your breath a burning vapour
                                                                            Which since then has alone, in place of my absent soul
                                                                            And my heart, served to keep me alive –
 
                                                                            Wishing yestereve to soften my torment,
                                                                            In which soul-less and heart-less I linger,
                                                                            I would have died in your arms at the moment
                                                                            When, despite you, I took from you a kiss.
 
 
 
One of those extended metaphors so beloved by love poets! In fact this one goes back directly to Marullus (see below), but you don’t need to know that to enjoy the poem. What you do need is the willingness to engage with the rather artificial extension of the metaphor! Given that, we can agree that Ronsard does the job very well.
 
Of course, this poem changed over time, though these are mostly ‘tweaks’ to address small poetic or grammatical points the later Ronsard was unhappy with.  The change that most surprises me is that in the later, not earlier, version Ronsard resorts to the ‘olde Frensche’ form (as we might say, though I’m sure his is genuine not faked) of “harsoir”. Normally, Ronsard tidies up such artificialities and makes sure he’s not being deliberately ‘poetical’ in this way; I suspect he might have been trying to avoid “que je pris”? Anyhow, I’ve used ‘yestereve’ above as a parallel ‘olde Englische’ form 🙂   Here’s Blanchemain’s text of the earlier version:
 
 
 
Hier au soir que je pris maugré toy
Un doux baiser, accoudé sur ta couche,
Sans y penser, je laissay dans ta bouche
Mon ame, hélas! qui s’enfuit de moy.
 
Me voyant prest sur l’heure de mourir,
Et que mon ame, amusée à te suivre,
Ne revenoit mon corps faire revivre,
Je t’envoyay mon cœur pour la querir.
 
Mais mon cœur, pris de ton œil blandissant,
Aima trop mieux estre chez-toy, Madame,
Que retourner, et non plus qu’à mon ame
Ne luy chaloit de mon corps perissant.
 
Lors, si je n’eusse en te baisant ravy
De ton haleine une chaleur ardente,
Qui depuis seule (en lieu de l’ame absente
Et de mon cœur) de vie m’a servy,
 
Voulant hier mon tourment appaiser,
Par qui sans ame et sans cœur je demeure,
Je fusse mort entre tes bras à l’heure
Que maugré toy je te pris un baiser.
 
 
 
                                                                            Yesterday at evening when I took despite you
                                                                            A sweet kiss while leaning on your couch,
                                                                            Without thinking of it I left in your mouth
                                                                            My soul, alas, which ran away from me.
 
                                                                            Seeing me immediately dying,
                                                                            And that my soul, amused to be following you,
                                                                            Would not return to make my body live again,
                                                                            I will send you my heart to seek it.
 
                                                                            But my heart, captured by your flattering eyes,
                                                                            Liked being with you too much, my lady,
                                                                            To return, and no more than my soul
                                                                            Did it care about my dying body.
 
                                                                            So – if I had not as I kissed you seized
                                                                            From your breath a burning warmth
                                                                            Which since then has alone, in place of my absent soul
                                                                            And my heart, served to keep me alive –
 
                                                                            Wishing yesterday to soften my torment,
                                                                            In which soul-less and heart-less I linger,
                                                                            I would have died in your arms at the moment
                                                                            When, despite you, I took from you a kiss.
 
 
As I mentioned, this is based on one of the epigrams by Marullus. As a Latinist I have to register my excitement at seeing a bizarre word like “quantulacumque” – the sort of word you come across once or twice in a lifetime!! Note that the neat recapitulation of the beginning which Ronsard gives us ins itself a neat translation of the Marullan original.
 
 
Suaviolum invitae rapio dum, casta Neaera,
imprudens vestris liqui animam in labiis,
exanimusque diu, cum nec per se ipsa rediret
et mora letalis quantulacumque foret,
misi cor quaesitum animam ; sed cor quoque blandis
captum oculis nunquam deinde mihi rediit.
Quod nisi suaviolo flammam quoque, casta Neaera,
hausissem, quae me sustinet exanimum,
ille dies misero, mihi crede, supremus amanti
luxisset, rapui cum tibi suaviolum.
 
 
 
                                                                            When I stole a kiss from you, chaste Neaera, unwilling as you were,
                                                                            I foolishly left my soul on your lips;
                                                                            And soul-less for a while, since it would not return by itself
                                                                            And the delay, however small, would have been fatal,
                                                                            I sent out my heart to seek my soul; but my heart too, caught
                                                                            By your falttering eyes, never came back to me.
                                                                            If I had not drunk in with the kiss, chaste Neaera,
                                                                            A flame as well which supports me while I am soul-less,
                                                                            That day would have shone upon your wretched lover, believe me,
                                                                            As his very last, when I stole that kiss from you.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Chanson (Am 2:59a)

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Voulant, ô ma douce moitié
T’asseurer que mon amitié
Ne se voirra jamais finie :
Je fis pour t’en asseurer mieux,
Un serment juré par mes yeux
Et par mon cœur et par ma vie.
 
Tu jures ce qui n’est à toy,
Ton cœur et tes yeux sont à moy
D’une promesse irrevocable,
Ce me dis-tu : helas au moins
Reçoy mes larmes pour tesmoins
Que ma parolle est veritable.
 
Alors belle tu me baisas
Et doucement des-attizas
Mon feu d’un gracieux visage :
Puis tu fis signe de ton œil,
Que tu recevois bien mon dueil
Et mes larmes pour tesmoignage.
 
 
 
 
                                                                            “Wanting, my sweet other half,
                                                                            To assure you that my love
                                                                            Would never come to an end,
                                                                            I made to better assure you of it
                                                                            A vow sworn on my eyes
                                                                            And my heart and my life.”
 
                                                                            “But you swore by what you don’t have :
                                                                            Your heart and eyes are mine
                                                                            By an irrevocable promise,
                                                                            You told me.” “Alas, then at least
                                                                            Accept my tears as witness
                                                                            That my word is truthful.”
 
                                                                            Then, my fair one, you kissed me
                                                                            And sweetly un-kindled
                                                                            My fire with your gracious face;
                                                                            And then you made me a sign with your eye
                                                                            That you indeed accepted my grief
                                                                            And my tears as a witness. 
 
 
 
A charming little song, beautifully-balanced in those 3 stanzas. Belleau tells us this poem is “taken from” Marullus, but as you can see Ronsard took the idea alone from Marullus: the balance and shape are all his own.

 
(Marullus : Epigram 1.58)
 
Juravi fore me tuum perenne,
per me, per caput hoc, per hos ocellos,
qui te disperiere contuendo,
per quod plurima cor tulit dolenda.
“Haec”, inquis, “mea sunt, tua ista sunto ! “
At certe lacrimae meae, Neaera,
quas juro fore me tuum perenne.
 
                                                                            I have sworn I will be yours forever –
                                                                            By myself, by this head, byu these eyes
                                                                            Which have perished from looking on you,
                                                                            By this heart which has borne so many grievous things.
                                                                            “These things,” you say, “are mine: let them be yours!”
                                                                            These are certainly my tears, Neaera,
                                                                            By which I swear I will be yours forever
 
 Blanchemain’s version of the poem offers a few variants:
 
Voulant, ô ma douce moitié
T’asseurer que mon amitié
Jamais ne se verra faillie,
Je te fis pour t’asseurer mieux,
Un serment juré par mes yeux
Et par mon cœur et par ma vie.
 
Tu jures ce qui n’est à toy,
Ton cœur et tes yeux sont à moy
D’une promesse irrevocable,
Ce me dis-tu : Las ! pour le moins
Reçoy mes larmes pour tesmoins
Que ma parolle est veritable.
 
Alors belle tu me baisas
Et doucement des-attisas
Le feu qui brusle mon courage :
Puis tu fis signe de ton œil,
Que tu recevois bien mon dueil
Et mes larmes pour tesmoignage.
 
 
 
 
                                                                            “Wanting, my sweet other half,
                                                                            To assure you that my love
                                                                            Would never fail,
                                                                            I made to better assure you
                                                                            A vow sworn on my eyes
                                                                            And my heart and my life.”
 
                                                                            “But you swore by what you don’t have :
                                                                            Your heart and eyes are mine
                                                                            By an irrevocable promise,
                                                                            You told me.” “Alas, then at the least
                                                                            Accept my tears as witness
                                                                            That my word is truthful.”
 
                                                                            Then, my fair one, you kissed me
                                                                            And sweetly un-kindled
                                                                            The fire which burns up my courage;
                                                                            And then you made me a sign with your eye
                                                                            That you indeed accepted my grief
                                                                            And my tears as a witness. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Chanson (Amours 2:49b)

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Je suis si ardent amoureux,
Que fol souvenir ne me puis,
Ny où je suis ne qui je suis,
Ny combien je suis malheureux.
 
J’ay pour mes hostes nuict et jour
En mon cœur la rage et l’esmoy
Qui vont pratiquant dessus moy
Toutes les cruautez d’Amour.
 
Et toutesfois je n’ose armer
Ma raison pour vaincre le tort :
Car plus on me donne la mort,
Et plus je suis content d’aimer.
 
 
 
 
                                                                            I am so ardently in love
                                                                            That, mad, I cannot remember
                                                                            Where I am, or who I am,
                                                                            Or how unhappy I am.
 
                                                                            I have as guest night and day
                                                                            In my heart rage and agitation
                                                                            Which practice on me
                                                                            All the cruelties of love.
 
                                                                            And yet all the time I dare not arm
                                                                            My reason to overcome wrong;
                                                                            For the more it pains me to death
                                                                            The more I’m happy to be in love.
 
 
 
A lovely, neatly-wrought poem. Who’d have thought it had been so revised?!  Here’s Blancheamin’s earlier version, sharing just over half its text with the later one!
 
Je suis tellement amoureux,
Qu’au vray raconter je ne puis,
Ny où je suis, ne qui je suis,
Ny combien je suis malheureux. 
 
J’ay pour mon hoste nuict et jour
Comme un tigre, un cruel esmoy
Qui va pratiquant dessus moy
Toutes les cruautez d’Amour. 
 
Et si mon cœur ne peut s’armer
Contre l’œil qui le navre à tort :
Car, plus il me donne la mort,
Plus je suis contraint de l’aimer.

 
 
 
                                                                            I am so in love
                                                                           That truly I cannot tell
                                                                           Where I am, or who I am,
                                                                           Or how unhappy I am. 
 
                                                                           I have as guest night and day
                                                                           Like a tiger a cruel agitation
                                                                           Which practices on me
                                                                           All the cruelties of love. 
 
                                                                           And yet my heart cannot arm itself
                                                                           Against the eyes which wrongly rend it;
                                                                           For the more they pain me to death
                                                                           The more I’m forced to love them.
 
 
 
The poem is another of Ronsard’s responses to Marullus, this time an epigram “De suo amore” (‘On his love’):
 
Jactor, dispereo, crucior, trahor huc miser atque huc,
ipse ego jam quis sim nescio aut ubi sim :
tot simul insidiis premor undique : proh dolor !  In me
saevitiae Cypris dat documenta suae.
Saevitiae documenta suae dat, ego hanc tamen unam
depereo, utque nocet, sic libet usque sequi.
Qua siquis miserum solam me liberet horam,
Hic mihi sit Phoebo doctior et melior.
 
 
                                                 I am cast down, I despair, I’m tortured, I drag myself here and there wretchedly,
                                                 I don’t now know who I am, or where I am;
                                                 I am caught in so many plots, at the same time, on all sides; o wretchedness, against me
                                                 Cypris [Venus] has given evidence of her savagery.
                                                 She has given evidence of her savagery, but I perish
                                                 For this one lady, and as she harms me so I am pleased to follow her further.
                                                 If anyone could free me in my wretchedness from her for just one hour,
                                                 He would be to me wiser and better than Apollo.

 

 
 
 

Chanson (Amours 2:49a)

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Quand je te veux raconter mes douleurs,
Et de quel mal en te servant je meurs,
Et quelle fiebvre ard toute ma mouelle,
Ma voix tremblote, et ma langue chancelle,
Mon cœur se pasme, et le sang me tre-saut :
En mesme instant j’endure froid et chaut,
Sur mes genoux descend une gelee,
Jusqu’aux talons une sueur salée
De tout mon corps comme un fleuve se suit,
Et sur mes yeux nage une obscure nuit :
Tant seulement mes larmes abondantes
Sont les tesmoings de mes flames ardantes,
De mes souspirs et de mon long soucy,
Qui sans parler te demandent mercy.
 
 
 
 
                                                                         When I wish to tell you of my sadness,
                                                                         And the ills of which I am dying, serving you,
                                                                         And the fever which burns all my marrow,
                                                                         My voice trembles and my tongue staggers,
                                                                         My heart faints, and my blood leaps;
                                                                         At the same moment I endure both hot and cold,
                                                                         On my knees descends an icy-cold,
                                                                         A salty sweat flows all the way to my heels
                                                                         From my whole body like a river,
                                                                         And over my eyes swims a dark night;
                                                                         So that only my plentiful tears
                                                                         Are the witnesses of my passionate flame,
                                                                         My sighs and my long troubles,
                                                                         Which without speaking beg you for pity.
 
 
 
 
Here’s a novelty – a 14-line poem, but not a sonnet. Being in couplets, it doesn’t follow Ronsard’s ‘rules’ for a sonnet’s rhyme-scheme – but it is noteable that he still alternates couplets with masculine and feminine endings to ensure variety. Blanchemain’s version has only two variants: line 3 becomes “Et quel venin dessèche ma mouelle” (‘And the poison which dries up my marrow’); and in line 7, the icy cold “se fond” (‘melts’) over his knees.
 
No doubt one reason for this being cast in the form of a chanson, is that Ronsard is again developing his ideas from a Latin poem by Marullus, another of his epigrams (2.40) ‘to Neaera’:
 
 
Vesanos quotiens tibi furores
atque ignes paro, quos moves, referre
et quantus deus ossibus pererret,
qui me nocte die necat, Neaera,
et vox et sonus et parata verba
desunt tum mihi linguaque ipsa torpet
et vix sustineor genu labante :
maerent pectora perque membra passim
perque artus fluor it repente salsus
et diem subitae occupant tenebrae,
nec quicquam nisi lacrimae supersunt,
quae mutae quoque opem precantur unae.
 
 
 
                                                                         Whenever I am ready to tell you of the insane
                                                                         Passions and fires which you set in motion,
                                                                         And how great a god courses in my bones
                                                                         Killing me night and day, Neaera;
                                                                         Then, my voice, its sound, the words I prepared
                                                                         They all disappear, and my tongue grows numb
                                                                         And I can scarcely stand on my shaking knees;
                                                                         My breast grieves, and all through my limbs
                                                                         And veins the salty wetness unexpectedly rushes
                                                                         And sudden darkness fills the day;
                                                                         And nothing but tears remain
                                                                         Which mutely too beg for aid from my one lady.
 
 
 
 
 

Chanson (38a)

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Mon soin, amoureux esmoy,
Voyez combien de merveilles
Vous parfaites dedans moy
Par vos beautez nompareilles.
 
De telle façon vos yeux,
Où tousjours mon cœur s’en-vole,
Vostre front imperieux,
Vostre ris vostre parole
 
Me bruslent depuis le jour
Que j’en eu la cognoissance,
Desirant d’extreme amour
En avoir la jouyssance :
 
Que sans l’aide de mes pleurs
Dont ma vie est arrosée,
Long temps a que les chaleurs
D’Amour l’eussent embrasée.
 
Au contraire vos beaux yeux,
Où tousjours mon cœur s’en-vole,
Vostre front imperieux,
Vostre ris vostre parole
 
Me gelent depuis le jour
Que j’en eu la cognoissance,
Desirant d’extreme amour
En avoir la jouyssance :
 
Que sans l’aide des chaleurs
Dont mon ame est embrasée,
Long temps a que par mes pleurs
En eau se fust espuisée.
 
Voyez donc mon doux esmoy,
Voyez combien de merveilles
Vous parfaites dedans moy
Par vos beautez nompareilles.
 
 
                                                                      My care, love’s upset,
                                                                      See how many wonders
                                                                      You perfect within me
                                                                      Through your matchless beauty.
 
                                                                      In such a way your eyes
                                                                      To which my heart always flies,
                                                                      Your imperious brow,
                                                                      Your smile, your words
 
                                                                      Have been burning me since the day
                                                                      When I first knew them,
                                                                      Wishing with extreme passion
                                                                      To have the pleasure of them;
 
                                                                      So that without the aid of my tears
                                                                      With which my life is bedewed,
                                                                      Long since the heats
                                                                      Of Love would have set me ablaze.
 
                                                                      On the contrary, your fair eyes
                                                                      To which my heart always flies,
                                                                      Your imperious brow,
                                                                      Your smile, your words
 
                                                                      Have been freezing me since the day
                                                                      When I first knew them,
                                                                      Wishing with extreme passion
                                                                      To have the pleasure of them;
 
                                                                      So that without the aid of the heats
                                                                      With which my soul is burning,
                                                                      Long since my plaints
                                                                      Would have been exhausted in water.
 
                                                                      See then my sweet agitation,
                                                                      See how many wonders
                                                                      You perfect within me
                                                                      Through your matchless beauty.
 
 
Another of Ronsard’s experiments with repetition and contrast to help shape the form of the poem: an opening and closing stanza respond closely; and then 2-3-4 is matched by 5-6-7.  The earlier Blanchemain version is surprisingly little different: a big change in the opening of the ‘refrain’, verses 2 & 5, but otherwise only a couple of minor variants.  One of those is the very opening: “Mais voyez, mon cher esmoy !” (Ah see, my dear trouble!’); the other in the 6th stanza, where in line 3 he writes “Desirant par grande amour” (‘Wishing in great passion‘). Interestingly the later thoughts (above) show Ronsard eliminating the subtle diffrence between this line in verse 6 and its equivalent in verse 3.
 
The refrain in the 2nd & 5th stanza is adapted as follows:
 
 
… De telle façon vos yeux,
Vostre ris et vostre grace,
Vostre front et vos cheveux,
Et vostre angélique face,
 
Me bruslent depuis le jour  …
 
 
                                                                      … In such a way your eyes,
                                                                      Your smile and your grace,
                                                                      Your brow and your hair,
                                                                      And your angelic face
 
                                                                      Have been burning me since the day
 
 
Interestingly, the original poem by Marullus offers a very different, more complex, set of structural links between the first and second half.  His scheme is broadly 6+6+1, or more precisely  (3+3)+(2+1 wrapped around 3)+1… Ronsard simplifies and restructures the respondences between the two halves; but it’s interesting how, reading the two, the simplicity/complexity of those respondences ‘feels’ pretty equivalent, so that both ‘feel’ like 2 corresponding halves, with a tailpiece or wrapper around them. Here’s Marullus for you to consider, another of his more famous poems:
 
 
Sic me blanda tui Neaera ocelli,
sic candentia colla, sic patens frons,
sic pares minio genae perurunt,
ex quo visa mihi et simul cupita es,
ut, ni me lacrimae rigent perennes,
totus in tenues eam favillas.
Sic rursum lacrimae rigant perennes,
ex quo visa mihi et simul cupita es,
ut, ni blanda tui Neaera ocelli,
ni candentia colla, ni patens frons,
ni pares minio genae perurant,
totus in riguos eam liquores.
O vitam miseram et cito caducam !
 
 
                                                                      Your eyes have so consumed me, my alluring Neaera,
                                                                      Your white neck, your open brow,
                                                                      Your cheeks equal to vermilion,
                                                                      For which you were seen and loved by me all at once,
                                                                      That unless my continual tears numb me
                                                                      I shall turn entirely into scattered ashes.
                                                                      So may my continual tears numb me again,
                                                                      Since you were seen and loved by me all at once,
                                                                      So that neither your eyes consume me, my alluring Neaera,
                                                                      Nor your white neck, nor your open brow,
                                                                      Nor your cheeks equal to vermilion,
                                                                      And I turn entirely to running water.
                                                                      O wretched life, destined for quick death!
 
 
 
 

Chanson (31a)

Standard
Amour, dy je te prie (ainsi de tous humains
Et des Dieux soit tousjours l’empire entre tes mains)
   Qui te fournist de fleches ?
Veu que tousjours colere en mille et mille lieux
Tu pers tes traits és cœurs des hommes et des Dieux,
   Empennez de flammeches ?
 
Mais je te pri’ dy moy ! est-ce point le Dieu Mars,
Quand il revient chargé du butin des soldars
   Tuez à la bataille ?
Ou bien si c’est Vulcan qui dedans ses fourneaux
(Apres les tiens perdus) t’en refait de nouveaux,
   Et tousjours t’en rebaille ?
 
Pauvret (respond Amour) et quoy ? ignores-tu
La rigueur, la douceur, la force, la vertu
   Des beaux yeux de t’amie ?
Plus je respan de traits sus hommes et sus Dieux,
Et plus d’un seul regard m’en fournissent les yeux
   De ta belle Marie.
 
 
 
                                                                      Love, tell me I beg (may power over all humans
                                                                      And the gods be always in your hands)
                                                                        Who supplies you your arrows?
                                                                      Since always in a passion, in thousands and thousands of places,
                                                                      You lose your darts in the hearts of men and gods,
                                                                        Feathered with little flames?
 
                                                                      Go on, I beg you, tell me! Is it perhaps the god Mars,
                                                                      When he comes back bearing the booty of soldiers
                                                                        Killed in battle?
                                                                      Or is it Vulcan, who in his furnaces
                                                                      (After you’ve lost yours) makes you more of them afresh
                                                                        And always resupplies you with them?
 
                                                                      Poor man (replies Love), why?  Don’t you know
                                                                      The severity and softness, the power and virtue
                                                                        Of your girl’s lovely eyes?
                                                                      The more I scatter my darts upon men and gods,
                                                                      The more are provided to me, with a single look,
                                                                        By your fair Marie’s eyes.
 
Another of Ronsard’s charming translations of Marullus. Blanchemain’s version has only minor textual variants, though this does include a change in the first line!  In the middle of the second stanza the soldiers have been “occis” (‘slaughtered’) in battle; line 1 becomes “Amour, dy-moy, de grace (ainsi des bas humains…)” – ‘Love, tell me please (may power over humans below…)’
 
In fact it is (as usual) wrong to call this a translation: it is a re-imagining by Ronsard of the original, it’s structure and shape re-worked even as many of the ideas remain the same. And of course it is another case where the concision of the Latin poem expands into glorious profusion in Ronsard! Ironically, Marullus restricted himself to 14 lines, 4+4+4+2 in sense-units – – gosh, a sonnet!  Here’s Marullus:
 
 
“Cum tot tela die proterve spargas,
tot figas sine fine et hic et illic
infensus pariter viris deisque,
nec unquam manus impotens quiescat,
quis tot spicula, tot, puer, furenti
letales tibi sufficit sagittas ?
Cum tot aethera questibus fatiges,
tot spargas lacrimas et hic et illic
infensus pariter viris deisque,
nec unquam madidae genae serescant,
quis suspiria crebra, quis dolenti
tam longas tibi sufficit querelas ? “
“At tu nec mihi tela, dum Neaera est,
nec curas tibi crede defuturas.”
 
 
                                                                      “Since you wantonly scatter so many arrows in a day
                                                                      And endlessly hit so many [victims] on all sides,
                                                                      Inimical equally to men and gods,
                                                                      And your hand never rests powerless;
                                                                      Who supplies you so many darts  and so many
                                                                      Lethal arrows in your passion, my boy?
                                                                      Since you tire the heavens with so many complaints
                                                                      And spread so many tears on all sides
                                                                      Inimical equally to men and gods,
                                                                      And their wet cheeks never dry;
                                                                      Who supplies you these frequent sighs and
                                                                      Such continuous complaints for the weeping [lover]?”
                                                                      “I will not lack arrows, while Neaera is here,
                                                                      Believe me, nor will you lack troubles.”
 
 
 
 

Chanson (28b)

Standard
Demandes-tu, chere Marie,
Quelle est pour toy ma pauvre vie ?
Je jure par tes yeux qu’elle est
Telle qu’ordonner te la plaist.
 
Pauvre, chetive, langoureuse,
Dolente, triste, malheureuse :
Et tout le mal qui vient d’amour,
Ne m’abandonne nuict ny jour !
 
Apres demandes-tu, Marie,
Quels compaignons suivent ma vie ?
Suivie en sa fortune elle est
De tels compaignons qu’il te plaist.
 
Ennuy, travail, peine, tristesse,
Larmes, souspirs, Sanglots, destresse,
Et tout le mal qui vient d’amour,
Ne m’abandonne nuict ny jour.
 
Voyla comment pour toy, Marie,
Je traine ma chetive vie,
Heureux du mal que je reçoy
Pour t’aimer cent fois plus que moy.
 
 
                                                                      Do you ask, my dear Marie,
                                                                      What sort of wretched life I lead for you?
                                                                      I swear by your eyes that it is the kind
                                                                      That it would please you to arrange.
 
                                                                      Poor, wretched, languid,
                                                                      Plaintive, sad, unhappy;
                                                                      And all the ills which come from love
                                                                      Do not leave me night or day!
 
                                                                      Next do you ask, Marie,
                                                                      What companions pursue my life?
                                                                      It is pursued in its ill-fortune
                                                                      By the kind of companions which would please you.
 
                                                                      Anxiety, struggle, pain, sadness,
                                                                      Tears, sighs, sobs, distress,
                                                                      And all the ills which come from love
                                                                      Do not leave me night or day!
 
                                                                      That is how for you, Marie,
                                                                      I lead my wretched life,
                                                                      Happy in the ills I receive
                                                                      For loving you a hundred times more than myself.
 
 
In the songs in book 2, Ronsard experiments with larger forms of symmetry or resonance within the shape of his poem: here A-B-A-B-A in the broad layout of the stanzas.  I think these are really quite successful and an intriguing way of balancing the strict sonnet forms elsewhere.
 
Blanchemain has “Voyla comment par toy, Marie” instead of “pour toy” (‘That is how because of you, Marie‘) in the final stanza; and a variant in the second half of the ‘B’ sections (stanzas 2 & 4) which end:
 
 
… Et tout le plus fascheux esmoy
 D’amour fascheux loge chez moy.
 
                                                                 …. And all the most tiresome passions
                                                                  Of tiresome love live in me.
 
 
 
Again, Ronsard based this poem on an original by Marullus. This time, it is Ronsard who expands, to deliver that structure mentioned above: Marullus is compact by contrast, offering a bipartite structure.
 
 
Rogas quae mea vita sit, Neaera :
qualem scilicet ipsa das amanti, est :
Infelix, misera, inquies, molesta
aut si triste magis potest quid esse.
Haec est, quam mihi das, Neaera, vitam.
Qui (dicis) comites ? Dolor, Querelae,
Lamentatio, Lacrimae perennes,
Langor, Anxietas, Amaritudo,
aut si triste magis potest quid esse.
Hos tu das comites, Neaera, vitae.
 
 
                                                                  You ask what my life is, Neaera?
                                                                  Such a life indeed as you give to your lover, it is:
                                                                  Unhappy, wretched, restless, troubled,
                                                                  And whatever could be more dismal.
                                                                  This is the life which you give me, Neaera.
                                                                  Who, you say, are my companions? Sorrow, complaints,
                                                                  Weeping, perpetual tears,
                                                                  Pining, anxiety, bitterness,
                                                                  And whatever could be more dismal.
                                                                  These are the companions you give my life, Neaera.
 
 
As an appendix, here is an anonymous but attractive 1825 translation of the Marullus, from the ‘Cheltenham Anthology’:
 
 
                                                                  You ask, Neaera, how I live?
                                                                  Just the kind of life you give;
                                                                  Hapless, restless, sad, and troubled;
                                                                  Wretchedness itself redoubled:
                                                                  Such the life your lover spends. – –
                                                                  Would you know my bosom friends?
                                                                  These are grief, complaints, and weeping,
                                                                  Bitter thoughts and care unsleeping,
                                                                  Hopeless anguish, lasting sorrow,
                                                                  Yesterday, to-day, to-morrow!
                                                                  Such the friends Neaera gives – –
                                                                  Such the life her lover lives!
 
                                                                                 By ‘N.I.H.’