Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Jacques Bertin - The sad woman



Original Title: "La femme triste"
Give me a sad woman
Rich of her disapointed loves
The house on the side of the track
The good hostess, the raw milk

Who goes back up loaded with apples
From a garden already in winter
who doesn't laughs much, who likes men
And remembers that she suffered

Give me a slow woman
Give me true silences
Give me never lieing
The true trust, the "I loved"

Clock noise hauling in the shadow
What we learn to live with !
Faithful barge that does not sink
Never your beautiful inclination so long!

Then mint leaf, old furnitures
True confidences, true cafés
Beautiful and heavy like an old piece of furniture
Give yourself suddenly completely

My hand protects this lamp
Give yourself slowly and I will believe in it
There is frost on your temples
In your eyes rises a tide

Everything lies, you know from going too fast
O the sighs never soared!
I absolve your sadness, I hesitate
Give me this veiled voice

Of the wrong that has been done to you formerly
You will talk to me, your lovers
or you will be quiet, then the war
You will talk. Everything that lies

The cannonades in the plain
The handsome boys, the brass bands
behind the curtain of sorrows
O miracle of abandonements

The coat in the water, the widowhood
Throw your age in this bal
Make a vine shoot of your hurt
To burn take your torments

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Léo Ferré - It Fits You


Original Title: "ça t'va"

You never go to the collections
You prefer to put your money flat in front of you
To buy yourself a beautiful house
Wrapped by Dior's of gothic
But as one can not go ass all bare
And then me I'd not want to
You dress yourself at a couturier of your own devising
that has affordable harnesses

It fits you
This hundred francs dress
Your messed up hair
That nothing that dresses you up

It fits you
Your pointy shoes
Even if they are knackered
It flatters your legs

It fits you
This lizard handbag
That gets a tan
Under its plastic looks

It fits you
That unprentious way
You have taken my name
To live of music

You never go at Rubinstein
That has sweet little face in tablet
Who for a long time will stage
The mug of the ladies for parade
And when you go out to the stuck-ups
And I ask you if you are ready
You say with your anarchist look:
"Me I have the sun on the facade"

It fits you
That ten francs mug
Despite what would say
The stupid photographs

It fits you
That back that goes down
Under the indecent eye
of the guys that are watching out for you

It fits you
Your wet windows
When they have watched
The joy that unwinds

It fits you
Your hands all like that
by that I do not know what
that makes the mother hens

You never go to the collections
You prefer to sew a little happiness
In our square and make your hole
Far from the nerds and their system
You are there until the end of times
Writing me the problem page
You let go of me just for me to have enough time
to make a song and tell you that I love you

It's fine by me
Your golden prison
Your adored mouth
by way of lock

It's fine by me
Your simmered dishes
so well that it feels like
eating some lust

It's fine by me
Your blessed look
that have the lovers
who remain faithful

It's fine by me
That one could say one day
"As for love
he only loved her"

Monday, December 23, 2013

Serge Reggiani - Paul's song


Original Title: "La Chanson de Paul"
This evening, I drink!
You can still turn the light off
And your white hand gliding on the rail
Go up to your bedroom
To look for your dark sleep
Me, I stay downstairs tonight
And I drink!

Yes I promised
Yes but I drink anyway!
Go I love you
Go in your night

I drink...
To the women who didn't love me
To the children I didn't have
But to you who wanted of me
I drink...
To those houses that I left
To the friends who made me fall
But to you who kissed me
But to you who kissed me

That evening
We were coming out of the cinema
The weather was bad
In the Vivienne street
I was very elegant
I was wearing my fur-lined jacket
You, you had your red coat
And I see your mouth again
Like a fruit under the rain
Like a fruit under the rain

This evening, I drink!
Thankfully, I am never drunk.
Sleep...Tonight, I will write my book.
It's time, it's been ages
It's my novel, it's my story
There are things you only write
only when it's very late
only when it's well into the night
Sleep, I love you
Sleep, in my life

I drink...
To the letters I didn't write
To bastards who deserve them
But I don't remember where they live
I drink...
To all the ideas I had
I drink to the ideas who got me
But to you who defended me
But to you who defended me

That day,
In a café of the 15th
You told me: "I love you"
I wasn't listening
There was a whole team
We were talking politics
I fight with a guy
And you took me away
Like a wounded child
Like a wounded child

I drink
To the combat you lead
To take me away from the party
Tonight, I drink to your defeat
I drink
To the time spent cursing you
making you laugh, cherishing you
To the time spent aging you

I drink...
To the women who didn't love me
To the children I didn't have
But to you who wanted of me
But to you who wanted of me

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Monique Morelli - Villon - I pity the time of my youth


Original Title: "Je plains le temps de ma jeunesse"

I pity the time of my youth
During which I have enjoyed more than others
Until the entrance of old age
That has its advancement concealed
It did not go on foot
Nor on horseback: Alas! How then?
Suddenly has flown away
And didn't leave me any gift

Gone has been and I remain
Poor of sense and knowledge
Sad, failed, more black than moor
Who has no sense, income has not
Of my own, the least I say seeing,
to disown me commit himself
Forgetting natural duty
For lack of a little inheritance
For lack of a little inheritance

Eh! God, if I had studied
At the time of my crazy youth
And to good morals dedicated
I would have house and soft bed
But what? I fled school
Like does the bad child
While writing this word
Close for my heart to break

My days have gone wandering
Like, says Job, of a tablecloth
Make the nets, when weaver
in his fist holds a burning straw
When if he has no end that sticks out
Suddenly he robs it
If I do not fear that anything assaults me anymore
Because in death everything is satisfied
Because in death everything is satisfied

Léo Ferré - Aragon - You won't come back from it


Original Title: "Tu n'en reviendras pas"
You won't come back you from it you who ran after the girls
Young man who I have seen the heart beating exposed
When I teared your shirt and neither you
You won't come back from it old Manille player

whom a shell cut in two sideways
For once he had a sensational game
And you the tatooed, the former legionnaire
You will survive a long time without face, without eyes

We leave God knows to where, it's of a bad dream
We will glide along the line of fire
Somewhere it's starting to not be a game anymore
The good men there are waiting for replacements

Roll in the distance, roll train of the last glows
The soldiers asleep that your dance shakes
Let the forehead lean and bend their neck
It smells of tobocco breath and sweat

How to look at you without seeing your fates
Bethroted to the earth and promised to pains
The night-light gives you the color of tears
You vaguely move your condemned legs

Already the stone thinks where your name is written
Already you are no more than a golden word on our squares
Already the memory of your love fades away
Already you only exist for having perished
Barbara's version:


Catherine Sauvage's version:


All poems written by Louis Aragon

Friday, December 20, 2013

Léo Ferré - Rutebeuf - Poor Rutebeuf


Original Title: "Pauvre Rutebeuf"
What became of my friends
whom I held so close
And loved so much
They have been too scarce
I believe the wind took them off
Love is dead
Those are friends that wind takes away
And the wind was blowing in front of my door
And took them away

With weather that defoliates the trees
when there are in branches no more leaves left
which do not fall down to earth
With poverty that appals me
that from everywhere wages war against me
In winter's winds
It's not suitable for me to tell you
How I shamed myself
In which way

What became of my friends
whom I held so close
And loved so much?
They have been too scarce
I believe the wind took them off
Love is dead
The evil can not come alone
All that had to come to me
happened to me

Poor sense and poor memory
has God given to me, the King of glory
and poor income
And straight to the ass when north wind blows
the wind comes to me, the wind airs me
Love, she is dead
Those are friends that wind takes away
And the wind was blowing in front of my door
Took them away

Hope of tomorrows are my feasts

Jacques Douai's version:

Cora Vaucaire's version:

Cora Vaucaire "Que sont mes amis devenus ?" par ina

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Jacques Douai - Luc Bérimont - I am closer to you




Original Title: "Je suis plus près de toi"
Music: "Lise Médini"
Text: "Luc Bérimont"

I plant a dry tree in the belly of the fire
The worn wick of the day blackens under the rain
The evening's noises are born I hear the oxen come in
The pendulum has ground minutes of soot

I'm closer to you
Who confuses the route
And who lets my voice
Drift on the ponds

I'm closer to you
Than the wind in the towers
Than the disgust of the days
which sits at the table and taunts me

I will know from now on how to suffer from love
Lost on the edge of the meadows in the muds of fall
I knew the sorrow in Paris in the yards
It's well a similar pain, a similar trick

I'm closer to you
Who confuses the route
And who lets my voice
Drift on the ponds

I'm closer to you
Than the wind in the towers
Than the disgust of the days
Which sits at the table and taunts me

Winter is a dead king feathered with crows
He opens, he was expecting me, he laughs of me like a brother
The bedrooms are adorned with a check of old bones
The age I have tonight weights like a stone

I'm closer to you
Who confuses the route
And who lets my voice
Drift on the ponds

I'm closer to you
Than the wind in the towers
Than the disgust of the days
Which sits at the table and taunts me

Jacques Bertin's version:

Friday, December 6, 2013

Léo Ferré - Louis Aragon - I sing to pass the time



Original title: "Je chante pour passer le temps"
Text: Louis Aragon
I sing to pass the time
small that I have left to live
Like you draw on the frost
Like you make your heart pleased
while throwing pebbles on the pond
I sing to pass the time

I have lived marvels during the day
You and I, remember it
And I have broken through the wall of the years
Miracles aplenty in the ears
Our universe is not the same anymore
I have lived marvels during the day

Let's have those fingers untangled now
Like the forehead from the glory
Our eyes were first to see
the clouds lower than us
And the lark at our knees
Let's have those fingers untangled now

We have made moonlights
For our palaces and our statues
What matters now that someone kills us
The nights will fall one by one
China turned itself into the Commune
We have made moonlights

And I would tell and I would tell
So much was this life adventure
Where man has become life-size
His voice above the forests
The mountains, the seas and the secrets
And I would tell and I would tell

Yes to pass the time I sing
To the violin the bow wears out
The pebble at the game of rebounds
And how my love is touching
Near me in the leaning shadow
Yes to pass the time I sing

I sing to pass the time
Yes to pass the time I sing
Philippe Léotard's version:


All poems written by Louis Aragon

Friday, November 29, 2013

Monique Morelli - Villon - Ballad of Blois contest



Original Title: "Ballade du concours de Blois"
I die of thirst beside the fountain
Hot as fire, and trembling tooth to tooth
In my own country, I am in a distant land
Near a blaze, shiver all burning
Bare as a worm, dressed like a president,
I laugh in tears and wait without hope
Taking my comfort back in sad despair
I rejoyce and have no pleasure at all
Powerful I am, without strength or power,
Welcomed gladly and spurned by each.

Nothing for me is sure but the uncertain matter
Obscure except what is completely obvious
Doubt I don't make except in certainties
Knowledge holds to a sudden accident
I win everything and remain loser
At daybreak, say: "God give you good evening!"
Lying on the wrong side I am greatly afraid of falling
I have means and if I have none of it
Expecting inheritance and of man I'm no heir
Welcomed gladly and spurned by each.

Taking care of nothing if I go through a lot of trouble
to acquire goods to which I'm no claimant
Who compliments me the most is the one who hurts me the most
And who is more true then tells more lies about me
My friend is the one who makes me understand
that a white swan is a black crow
And who harms me, believes he helps me provide
Truth, lies, today all is the same to me
I remember everything, can't imagine anything
Welcomed gladly and spurned by each.

Lenient Prince, may it please you to know
that I understand a lot and have no wit nor knowledge
Biased I am, alike to every law
What do I know more? What! Redeem what I’ve in pawn,
Welcomed gladly, and spurned by each.

Jean Ferrat - Aragon - What would I be without you?


Original Title: "Que serais-je sans toi?"
What would I be without you who came to meet me
What would I be without you but an heart sleeping in the wood
But this hour stopped at the dial of the watch
What would I be without you but this faltering

I've learned everything from you about the human things
And I've seen the world your way from then on.
I've learned everything from you: how you drink from fountains
How one reads in the sky, the distant stars
how from the passer-by who sings, you take up his song
I've learned everything from you up to the meaning of shiver

What would I be without you who came to meet me
What would I be without you but an heart sleeping in the wood
But this hour stopped at the watch's dial
What would I be without you but this faltering

I have learned everything from you as far as I'm concerned
That it's clear at noon, that a sky can be blue
That happiness isn't just a tavern's oil lamp
You took me by the hand in that modern hell
Where man doesn't know anymore what it's to be two
You took me by the hand like an happy lover

What would I be without you who came to meet me
What would I be without you but an heart sleeping in the wood
But this hour stopped at the watch's dial
What would I be without you but this faltering

Who talks of happiness often has sad eyes
Isn't it a sob of disappointment
A broken string at the guitarist's fingers
And nevertheless I tell you that happiness exists
Somewhere else than in the dreams, elsewhere than in the skies
Earth, Earth, here comes those unknown harbours

What would I be without you who came to meet me
What would I be without you but an heart sleeping in the wood
But this hour stopped at the dial of the watch
What would I be without you but this faltering

another version:


Sung by Marc Ogeret:

All poems written by Louis Aragon

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Léo Ferré - Verlaine - Soul does it remember


Text: Paul Verlaine
Original title: "Âme te souvient-il"
Soul, does it remember?
Soul, does it remember at the bottom of paradise
From Auteuil's station and trains of long ago
bringing you everyday, coming from the chapel?
So long ago already! Yet how I remember
after the first words of good morning and welcome
My old arm in yours we were leaving that Auteuil
And under the trees filled with a kind music
Our discussion was often metaphysical
O your strong arguments, your coalman faith
Not without some tendency, O so frank! to deny
But left so quickly at the first step of doubt!
And then we came back, more than slow, by road
A bit of the long way, at my place, at ours rather
to have lunch of hardly anything, lightly smoking quick and early
And hurry a long time a vague work
My poor child, your voice in the Bois de Boulogne!
Christine Sèvres' version:

Monday, November 25, 2013

Jacques Bertin - I would like a strange and very calm feast


Original Title: "Je voudrais une fête étrange et très calme"
I'd like a strange and very calm party
with musicians, silent and sweet
It'd be during a fall evening, a sunday
A very slow merry-go-round, a fine music

Naked women sitting on the white stone
are bending down to tie the shoe laces of children
Children in ribbons and who are pulling on white kites
Some women are humming a little, their head tilts

I would want eternal falls of leaves
Love in a sob, a light smile
Like we do between our fingers glide blades of grass
Women quietly distraught, lying down.

Streamer sailing like prayers
A danse in the grass and the grey sky very low
slowly, and the white and the red and the grey and the green
and threads of the Virgin are hanging on our arms

And to die at the knees of a very soft woman
Swings come and go, calls
Slowly on her heavy belly lay my head
And talk solemnly of the bodies, the day is going away
Laces, tulles, in the grass, a breeze
In the bodices hedges, nylons hang
Hair swinging softly, you see grey necks
and the arms send back, vaguely heavy balloons.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Maxime and Catherine Le Forestier - The sentimental education


Original Title: "L'éducation sentimentale"

Tonight in the mist
We'll go, my brunette
pick up oaths
This wild flower
that wreaks havoc
In children hearts
For you, my princess,
I'd make braids out of it
And in your hair
These oaths, my beauty,
will turn you cruel
toward your lovers

Tomorrow at dawn
We'll go once again
glean in the fields
pick up promisses
Flowers of tenderness
And of feeling
And up the hill
In the waterfowls
You will lay down
Into my arms, my dear,
Moonlit
You will give yourself

It's at twillight,
When the dragonfly
falls asleep in the swamp
that we will have to, my neighbor,
leave the hill
And quickly come back
Don't say a word, my brunette,
Not even to the moon,
And I, on my own,
will go single-handed,
I will remain quiet
I won't say a word

Tonight in the mist
We'll go, my brunette
pick up oaths
This wild flower
that wreaks havoc
In children hearts
For you, my princess,
I'd make braids out of it
And in your hair
These oaths, my beauty,
will turn you cruel
toward your lovers

Saturday, November 23, 2013

La Tordue - Aragon - The rose and the reseda

Modified translation from http://mrzine.monthlyreview.org/2010/aragon100210.html (by Yoshie Furuhashi)


Original Title: "La rose et le réséda"
The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
Both loved the beauty
Imprisoned by soldiers
Which climbed the ladder?
And which stood guard below?

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn'?
What matters the name of
This light on their steps?
that one was of the church
And the other balked from it?

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
Both were faithful
with their lips, hearts, arms
And both said that she will
live, time will tell

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
When the wheat is under the hail
Fool who is fussy
Fool who think of his little quarrels
In the heart of the common combat?

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
From the height of the citadel
The sentinel shot
Twice and one staggers
the other falls who will die

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
They are in prison
Who has the sadest pallet
Who freezes more then the other
Who prefers the rats?

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
A rebel is a rebel
Two sobs make a single knell
And when the cruel dawn arrives
They pass on

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
Repeating the name of the beauty
Neither of the two betrayed
And their blood runs red
Same color same vividness

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
It runs, and runs, and mingles
Into the earth it loved
So in the new season
Muscat grapes would ripen

The one who believed in heaven
The one who didn't
One runs and the other flies
From Brittany or Jura
And raspberries or plums
Crickets will sing again
Flute or cello, tell the story of
This double love that burnt
The lark and the swallow
The rose and the reseda

The poem said by Aragon himself in 1943:

All poems written by Louis Aragon

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Monique Morelli - Pierre de Ronsard - The drunkard's dream

This one always make me think of Bosch

Original Title: "Le rêve de l'ivrogne"
I see here, I see there
I see thousand horned beasts
Thousand kids in the streets
From one comes out a big bull
On the other hops a young goat
One has the horns of a satyr
And from the belly of the other pulls
a thousand revolutions crocodile
I see towns and towers
I see some red and some green
Look at them there! I see them covered
with sweets and candied peas
I see some are dead, I see some are alive
I see some, look at them! that look like
the wheats that tremble under the wind

I catch sight of a camp of armed dwarves
I see some that are not developed
Truncated of thighs and legs
And if they have the eyes burning
At the hollow of the stomach are sitting
I see fifty of them, I see six of them
that are bellyless, and if they have a head
Appalling with a big crest

Here comes two clouds all full
with Moors that have no hands
Nor body and have the faces
alike to those of wild cats
Ones carry goats feet,
And the others only have on lipe
that alone paddles and inside
they have no jaw nor teeth

One is going late, the other gallops
One rushes foward onto the croup
Of an unbridled centaur
And the other guided by a giant
Wearing a bell on his forehead
Through the air rides a genette
One on his back loads a calf
The other in his hand holds a hammer
One with a sullen look
Arms his fist with a felling axe
One carries a javelin, the other a trident
And the other a brand all glowing

Some are riding cranes
And the others turtles
Going to hunt with the gods
I see the good Father happy
that is turning into hundred news
I see some that have no brain
And make a non alike heap
So to want to beat the sun
And to enclose it in the cave
Of St Patrick or of Averne
I see his sister defending him
I see the whole sky splitting
And the earth become cracked
And the charos threatening them

I see hundred thousand young satyres
Having young goats dewclaws
Scaring thousand naiads
I see the dryads dance
among the forests stamping on their feet,
And now combing their hair again
Then go swimming in the fountains
There! Those clouds full of hail
Predict to me that Jupiter
Is vexed by me

Here comes the lightning
Do you hear doing battle
The belly of a cloud?
I saw, I saw ! I saw the fire,
I saw the thunderstorm and the thunder
Smashes me against the earth, all dead


All poems written by Ronsard

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Jacques Brel - Fernand

Slightly modified translation from http://lyricstranslate.com/en/fernand-fernand.html


To think that Fernand is dead
To think that he's dead, Fernand
To think that I'm alone behind
To think that he's alone in front
He, in his last coffin
Me, in the haze
He, in his hearse
And me, in my desert
In front there's only a white horse
Behind there's just me crying
To think there's not even wind
To shake my flowers
I, if I were the good Lord
I think I'd feel some guilt
To think that now it's raining
To think that Fernand is dead

To think that we are going through Paris
In the very ealy morning
To think that we are going through Paris
And it looks like Berlin
You, you, you don't know, you're sleeping
But it's a heartbreak
To have to go away
While Paris is still asleep
As for me, I'm dying to
wake some people up
I would make up a family for you
Just for your funeral
And then if I were the good Lord
I think I wouldn't be proud
I know, you do what you can,
But there is the way to do it

You know, I'll come back
I'll come back, often
In this fucking meadow
Where you have to rest
In the summer I'll give you some shade
We'll drink silence
To Constance, who doesn't
Give a damn about your shadow
And then adults are so stupid,
They'll probably manage to create a war for us
Then I'll come for good
To sleep in your graveyard
And now, good Lord
You will have a good laugh
And now, good Lord
Now: I will cry

Léo Ferré - Verlaine - Hope shines like a wisp of straw in the stable


Original Title: "L'espoir luit comme un brin de paille dans l'étable"
Hope shines like a wisp of straw in the stable
What do you fear of the drunken wasp of its mad flight?
See, the sun always rises in clouds in some hole.
Why didn't you fall asleep, elbow on the table?

Poor pale soul, at least this water from the well frozen
Drink it. Then sleep afterward. There, see, I'm staying,
And I'd would pamper the dreams of your nap
And you would hum like a cradled child

Noon strikes. For goodness' sake, go away madam.
He's asleep. It's surprising how women's steps
Resonates to the pour souls' brain.

Noon strikes. I had (the plants) watered in the bedroom.
Go, sleep! Hope shines like a stone in a cavity.
Ah, when the september's roses will blossom again !

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Nicole Louvier - I imagine that over your birth


Original Title: "J'imagine que sur ta naissance"
I imagine that over your birth
A fairy was watching
When we make acquaintance
Birds were singing
I imagine how much I imagine
When you were waiting for me
The face between your fine hands
Sometimes you cried

The fairy was leading me in a dream
In the gardens where you walked
Tonight it's not a lie
Today you are there, it's true, true

I imagine that I'm lucky
Because the fairy loved me
For bringing me face to face with you
when you were passing

I imagine, how much I imagine
if I were to lose you
How easy it'd be for me
to close my shutters

Through you the sweetness that lives in me
Through you the winds and the forest
I do not dare to believe you exist
And though you are here, it's true, true

I know I will be lucky if you stay here
But I know that I trust
The fairy will keep watching.

All the rest does not matter
If you die one day
It won't be a long absence
Will follow you always.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Jacques Bertin - The Degenerates


Original Title: "Les Tarés"

I would tell you, I would tell you
With my usual care about forms
"Let's love Madam!"
Or with the frozen gaze
"Undress"
Or again because I would certaintly be merciless
I would whisper with an imperceptible voice
"Insult me"
You would comply like a solo in a baroq score
We would despise one another of course without believing it
To reach that
It'd be good

We would give us the impression of coming out right ouf the memoirs
of a couple of notorious freaks in Locarno
In nighteen hundred twenty three.

I would be inflexible and pale like a Carpathian prince
having fled in the wagons of the white russians, the hell of the Bolsheviks
After having played piano, badly for that matter, in the burning winter palace
With the last band of night owls and hysterics

You would be the former mistress of a latino-bulgarian party head
The day when he would have had been killed, you would have had been on vacation in Ibiza
Then you would have become receptionist in the great Post of Tarbes
and girlfriend of the minister of Arabic cults.

Of a scaringly dishonesty, suffice to say, you'd would be
But so fragile.
Noone has ever loved me would be your motto, people would believe it.
You would have on your face of early hours effects of frights
Like towns
And in your head vast deserts where melancholy would make islands

Me with my silences long like stations' quays.
covered by scathing and sweet words like great fast trains
I would be suspected of having I do not know what great rare talent
The oracle would be expected to talk
And he would wait for the rumor to stop

Never withdrawing in front of those big wallets
with their calm mornings look
You would throw yourself in the last stage of your tour of the future
A real mariage with a gifted énarque very dull very stupid
and very brave on whom you will cheat with young bragging gays
and old men from the Académie

You will reappear every now and then, demanding that I make myself clear
You will provide arguments like: "Prove me that you do not love me"
We would then subject ourselves to the penultimate insults, pathetics
Saving ourselves always a last one for next time.

I'd act ruthlessly because I'll have to act ruthlessly
I'd sublet you in public auctions and you will like that
Forward for the scenaros, the low-angle shots, the mystical obscenities
And we would lock ourselves like every time in our right fix

Twisted, twisted as you are
One day that we were giving each others forfeits
And I commanded you to show yourself naked at the opera
You more subtly demanded from me, that I commit to
write a song for people to see
how I am and do not believe it.

Friday, November 15, 2013

Hélène Martin - The man sentenced to death


Original Title: "Le Condamné à mort"
Text: Jean Genet

On my neck without armor and without hate, my neck
Let my hand lighter and more solemn than a widow
brush under my collar, without your heart to be moved
Let your teeth lay their wolf's smile

Oh come, my beautiful sun, Oh come my Spanish night,
Come in my eyes that will be dead tomorrow
Come, open my door, bring me your hand
Lead me far from here to wander in our mind

The sky can awake, the stars florish
Nor the flowers sigh, and of the meadows the black grass
welcome the dew where the morning is going to drink
The church tower can ring: I alone will die.

Oh come my sky of rose, Oh my blond basket!
Visit in your night your man sentenced to death.
Tear your flesh away, kill, climb, bite,
but come! Lay your cheek against my round head

We hadn't finished to talk about love
We hadn't finished to smoke our gitanes
We may wonder why the courts sentence
An assassin so beautiful that he makes the day grow pale

Love come on my mouth ! Love open your doors!
Cross the corridors, come down, walk lightly,
Fly in the stairs, more supple than a shepherd
More carried by the air than a dead leave's flight.

Oh go through the walls: if you have to walk on the edge
of the roofs, of the oceans: Cover yourself with light,
make use of threat, make use of prayer
But come, oh my frigate, one hour before my death.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Jacques Bertin - Hands


Original Title: "Des Mains"

Hands to leave to the ocean
like hair or like life
Beautiful hands on the page or the skin
Beautiful hands, hands of nobleness
Hands like are all hands

Hands like night lights
in the shadow being born, coming and going
Hands of linen maids
Hands like watching over, hands of mothers

Hands digging furrows in the shadowless life
Hands blindly following a passion
Hands to build a house like my father
Hands like crowds of hands coming to give me the hand

Hands like crows of hands calling for hope and running water
Hands like herds of hands going along the bank
and welcoming you in your limitless tomorrow

Hands tracing the signs of forgiveness
and then looking for themselves like words of abnegation
Hands like sails to leave very far
Hands like sails to leave far, far away
With children's eyes in the horizon far, far away
Hands for my love far away
Hands to bring love back to reason
And the vagabond home

Jacques Bertin - Threat


Original Title: "Menace"

In an air-conditioned office maybe there would have been
a failure in the calculation of the basic goods count
or a disease thrown in the food chain
by a powerless accountant

An almost minimal damage would be enough or that breaks
an extremely flexible rod or a mirror.
A sign in the sky would be enough, a motionless bird
or next to nothing different in the intimacy of the air.

It'll be around noon, there will be a big silence
and right away there will be a long shout of a woman
Like coming out of a damaged car in a rainy decor
Your death would have been announced on the television.

It'd suddenly and simply be too late
Too late for everything, for the anger and for the scream.
Too late for the flight and too late for the revolt
Too late for the last boat and for the fight and for life.

Light is going out everywhere, the phones are ringing.
A nice poisonous wind is blowing in the deserted hospitals.
You find yourselves affected in clusters and you die.
An uncontrollable reaction propagates a gas in the green sky.

The misery lifts its muzzle you throw yourselves on the roads.
For the big scene of exodus which this time will end badly.
There are no more shelter at the end of the road, no more road,
no more front direction, no more march to follow, no more directions.

Ah you are going faster and faster most probably
To Lyon or to New York in big impassive planes
Thrown from aseptic chapels by fabricated voices
Misery you visit it in clubs in exotic countries.

In all the bourgeois flats that have the look of theatre stages
where everything goes through the filter of velvet and of convention.
We handle the silverware, the witticism, the capital
and the concept and most of all without ever almost raise the voice.

The bourgeoisie ruling crêpe paper on its realm.
Sure of itself in its technology, of its cloth ears
We don't know really where we are going but no matter
when you get hold of the role you improvise and Godspeed!

The words are empty that you are reciting. The theater
gives in the rigging on the sky from above.
It's a sort of ghost ship that has in its holds
a few billions of negros that are scared

Fake world, Oh world without reason, fragile world!
Oh that lives incredibly from its fragility!
That finds in its flight a sort of relative balance
And the abyss like a belly attracts the mad ones who are going to sell their souls there.

Captive world. Oh world without love, fragile world!
Good people who let yourself be drained.
I want to spread terror like a patient tide.
There is little time left to save the world and save you.

There is little time left for the holly wrath.
I see you like a horse with broken legs
Mad eyes, looking to get up, looking for help
in the empty sky around him which turns and in his head impaled.

People Ah you do not believe much in love nor in insolence.
If I say people why are you turning round yourself?
Who is the one I'm designating with this term?
The revolt looks to you a business of fanatics or spoiled children.

But there is like a dirty disease in the joy
Like a trust crisis in the quality of tap water.
Maybe the fruits of the heart are treated, a doubt will always remain.
Suddenly the suspicion is settling and here you are run through by fright.

Terror I want, terror I want to spread
like a contribution of blood in the tired body
Holy wars everywhere, you had been entrusted with weapons
What have you done of them? Remember, what have you done of them?

Say, what have you done with the word that its a glowing ember?
You take it fully in your hand. You carry the fire.
In the exhausted lands, in the bad wounds,
In the bad sleeps or on the eyes of the people you want to love.

I'm going to carry the war in the papers to the old humanism,
Weary, becoming sloppy in the stagnant water of chronicles and marshes.
Little feudal lords, the parapet you certainly never pass the head through
We betray kindly behind the bags of letters to the Editor pilled up.

We need words carrier with steel tracks in the head
to lead in the valley that distraugth crowd of young people.
God protects them and God guides them and God loves them
They have made home the old world corrupted with a burning bush.

Words, to deal blows because it's high time, word.
The truth, the truth as if life depended upon it.
Word, to open a territory with fertile wounds.
O word! Before the season advances.

Tomorrow there is a virus manufactured by accident.
Boats not arriving anymore.
A bulb that snaps in the final control room.
A bomb too much in the central magma

I'm telling you it's time.
This world is in this notebook we are closing
with a weary gesture and that we are crushing like an heart
Look at your last beautiful magnificient plane taking off.

It's going to roam in the suburb of the "why how".
This world tell yourself we'll forget about it very quickly
Like in a block-calendar a number among a hundred.
This world is already nothing more but a miserable graphic

In which the eye and reason are looking for what one could see in it.
Now that the book is closing feel that major void.
The sky is deserted. The earth rustles with out of tune shouts.
Let rise here those that have the pioneer spirit in the head.
Everything will have to be restarted again from this evening on.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Monique Morelli - Louis Aragon - Laughing and Crying


Original Title: "Rire et Pleurer"
Text: Louis Aragon

Between crying man hesitates
And laughing and laughing carelessly
His dreams are sometimes going so fast
That he doesn't know himself how
It's that crying leaves him

As long as one plays dice
everything depends on the point you bring up
This out of tune instrument
Which we take for the human soul
Is only useful to change our mind

Cruel and pitiful world
That believes to everything it's being told
And carries its unbelievable cross
Through plague and fire
While making fun of the poor devils

My heart, my heart watch out for people
Even to those who shiver from cold
They only have memory of money
Don't know they look like us
And even make some while sharing

Afterall it's barely if they notice
If it's sunny or if it's raining
Those are animals that you pen in
Under the black sky or the blue sky
While waiting for them to be taken away

For which penal colony for which destiny
For which night that has no limit
For which night that has no morning
Which night where dying imitates
The first childlike gestures

All poems written by Louis Aragon

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Jacques Bertin - I shall meet you in a reversed dream


Original Title: "Je te rencontrerai dans un rêve inversé"

I'll meet you in a reversed dream
compared to the motion of the rains and tides
Maybe we'll love each other, we have no clue
What's the point to assume that everything is distorted
Nothing ever goes well.

I'll see you, you'll be laid on the road, far to the front
In the song of the wipers never completely in rythm, and you in front
placed high over the zip skirt that splits on the front
Forest parted on each side
And you up there, in front

It's at that time that you come back from your secret lives
Where have you been germinating?
If you hear me, get down from your air mattress
There are no houses at the end of the road
There is the road there in front

Flats we occupy, we desert
Corridors like loves
And the road, there in front

I'll meet you in our life that is always reversed
like a dream
Maybe we'll love each other, we have no clue
You'll get in the car with your sad look and your sex
Your white skin and everything that is needed for the harm
And rain will cover us.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Dominique A - The Water Trade



Original Title: "Le commerce de l'eau"
The falling rain is sweet
And we are making love
Some further down are involved
in the water trade
As they smell a bankruptcy
They take bastard looks
And they make money out of the rain
And we are making love

Barks are running nearby
We see some bailing out
Sending water back to water
The rain however seemed
Innocuous and sweet
Discreet like the moment
that let itself get hung up
And make us love one another

And money is made out of the rain
In the tea houses
Where disapointed settlers
evoke old summers
where noone was spoking
about the water trade
Of that bailed out water
On small boats

We, oblivious of everything
And the world under reach
We do not know anything else
but how to love each others
Transactions are made
up to our own backs
And we get nothing from it
but the taste of the skin

The rain falling is hard
for those who have to row
And who later to drink
Will still have to pay
But as she settles
Like silk, velvet
On the benevolent back
Of those making love.

The rain falling is hard
for those who have to row
And who later to drink
Will still have to pay
But as she settles
Like silk, velvet
On the benevolent back
Of those making love.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Jacques Bertin - A moment



Original Title: "Un instant"
A moment like fallen from the pocket, a cigarette
A moment or a blade of grass pulled up from the water
A caesura in the running, in the breath
A measurement for nothing just before the sob
A wound cutting in two the ear of the plain
to throw there a river like a water trickle
If you talk it does not matter
Talk of the body's presence and of rest

In the shoulder, a moment motionless
In the shoulder of the earth
Stopped between the two pages of the book
A moment

A gaze on life gathered the whole life
On a floor the piano under a little girl's fingers
The silence on the roofs. The music
And just below certainties, that moment
Just below words, promisses, habits
To recognise ourselves stranger to ourselves and strong, a moment

A moment, on the bridge
Or it's me arched between the banks
And from everywhere the call swelling, the uncertain call
The noise, the noise of the street, of building sites, the noise of the blood
In the arteries the noise, always the same noise
of tiredness and of fear, the noise of blood

Life or something as usual
that doesn't dare to say its name
Maybe the friendship for men
A stolen fruit on a stal and nothing more
A moment in that bedroom where a woman
is undressing slowly in the protected silence of her curtains.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Jacques Bertin - The Big Departures



Original Title: "Les Grands Départs"

Who will know where I have been
I will go away on a road
fortuitously without anyone suspecting
Did I even know myself where I was going?

Phone along the wires
Tired heart, fragile engine
Deserted hamlet and destiny
Derisory, futile decor

Someone calls, it is noon
But with a voice that barely dares
Everything is asleep, looks like everything is said
And your uncertain tenderness
parts an ancient wound

Friends, Oh you are abandoning me
Save me, odd is my sorrow
Life flows through the wound

I'll go away in the silence
In my regained silence
At the top of the meadows, in my silence
And in the grass where I'd have passed
The friendship of inert things
Will wrap around me to ruin me
Two minutes of damned waves
And in the blond to become motionless
I will die.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Léo Ferré - Arthur Rimbaud - The seven years old poets


Original Title: "Les poètes de sept ans"

And the mother, closing the homework book²
was going away satisfied and very proud, without seeing,
In the blue eyes and under the forehead full of eminences
the soul of her child handed over to the repugnances

The whole day he sweat of obedience, very
intelligent, though black twitches, a few features
Seemed to prove in him acrid hypocrisies
In the shadow of the corridors with moldy hangings
In passing, he sticked his tongue out, both fists
at the groin and in his closed eyes was seeing dots
A door opened on the evening: with the lamp
you could see him, up there, moaning on the ramp
Under a gulf of daylight hanging from the roof. The summer
mostly, vanquished, stupid, he persisted in
withdrawing in the coolness of the latrines
He was thinking there, tranquil and handing over his nostrils

When washed from the smells of the day, the small garden
behind the house, in winter, moonlit
lying at the bottom of a wall, burried in the marl
and for visions crushing his scatterbrained eye
He listenned to the swarming squalid wall bars
Mercy! Those children alone were his familiars
Who, puny, naked forehead, eye losing on the cheek its colors,
hiding thin yellow and black from mud fingers
Under clothes stinking of the fair and old-looking
conversed with the sweetness of the idiots!
And if, having surprised him doing hideous pities
His mother grew scared; the deep tendernesses,
of the child, threw themselves on that astonishment.
It was good. She had the blue gaze, - that lies!

When 7 years old, he was making novels about life
of the big desert where gleams the Freedom delighted,
Forests, suns, shores, savanas! - He made use
of illustrated journals in which, redfaced, he looked at
Spanish women laugh and Italian women
When came, the brown eye, mad, in indian dresses,
- Eight years Old, - the daughter of the workers next door
The little one brutal, and she had jumped,
In a corner, on his back while shaking her braids
And he was under her, he was biting her buttocks
Because she was never wearing pants
- And, by her bruised by fists and heels,
Took away the flavors of her skin in his room,

He feared the pale sundays of december
Where, pomaded, on a mahogany pedestal table
he was reading a bible with a cabage green edge
Dreams oppressed him every night in the alcove
He didn't like God; but the men, who in the musky evening
Black, in blouse, he saw coming back to the suburb
Where the town criers, in three drum rolls
Make around edicts laugh and roar the crowds
- He dreamt the loving meadow, where luminous
swells, sane perfumes, golden pubescence
make their calm movement and soar up !

And as he savored mostly the dark things,
When, in the naked room with closed shutters,
High and blue, acridly held with dampness
He was reading his novel constantly contemplated
Full of heavy ochrid skies and sunken forests,
of flesh flowers with deployed sidereal woods
Dizziness, Collapses, routs and mercies!
- While the neighborhood's rumor matured
downstairs, - alone and lying on cloth pieces
ecru, and violently foreboding the sail !
²in french it also sounds like the "book of duties" as homeworks and duties are the same word.

Live version

léo ferré - les poètes de sept ans

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Jacques Bertin - A Journey



Original Title: "Un Voyage"
I found the old crack back in the hull
Dampness oozing out like the eternal poison
I cried, seated, the head against the compartment
On the other side the engine was beating his deep song
The one who comes from childhood and whose low frequencies are always right

Where are you going to drop your bag
make a bed with your tears

There was hanging in that place a smell of asphalt and urine
Carved accross the wound a name could be distinguished
An illusion or a message or a trademark.
The world was passing against the portholes, slowly like a world
The pretentious facades were crumbling in the blind spots.
We were seeing faces of women, frozen and thoughtful
Marking the mist like immature winter suns.

I do not know why I'm fighting
The ship is taking me into dawn
Toward the high sea of course like every morning
I find myself making my nasty traffic in an indistinct port
You have to pay in cash in strong currency and with a smile

I do not know why I'm fighting
I cried in the scorching heat
The world is beautiful
Women give themselves seeming to forget themselves
Our victories are in front of us
That are holding out their hands to us

Where are you going to drop your bag
make a bed with your tears

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Philippe Léotard - Louis Aragon - Is this how men live?


Original Title: "Est-ce ansi que les hommes vivent"
Text: Louis Aragon
Music: Léo Ferré

Everything is matter of scenery
Changing of bed, changing of body
What for? As it's again
I who betrays myself
I who drags and lie around
And my shadow undresses itself
In the arms alike of girls
Where I believed I found a country
Light heart, changing heart, heavy heart
The time to dream is quite short
What should be done of my nights
What should be done of my days
I had nor love nor residence
Nowhere where I live or die
I was passing like the rumor
I fell asleep like the noise

Is this how men live?
And their kisses follow them in the distance

It was an unreasonable weather
The deads had been put on the table
We were making sand castles
We took wolves for dogs
Everything was changing pole and shoulder
Was the play funny or not
I if I didn't hold my part well
It was because I didn't understand anything

Is this how men live?
And their kisses follow them in the distance

In the Hohenzollern district
Between the Saar and the barracks
Like the lucerne's flowers
Blossomed Lola's breasts
She had a swallow's heart
On the brothel's couch
I come to lie down beside her
among the hiccups of the pianola

Is this how men live?
And their kisses follow them in the distance

The sky was grey with clouds
There flew wild gooses
That were shouting death in passing
Above the houses of the quays
I saw them through the window
Their sad song entered in my being
And I thought I was recognizing
some Rainer Maria Rilke
She was brown and though pale
Her hair fell over her hips
And the week and the sunday
She opened her naked arms to everyone
She had earthenware eyes
She worked valiantly
For an artilleryman from Mainz
Who never came back from it

Is this how men live?
And their kisses follow them in the distance

There are other soldiers in town
And the night the civilians go up
Put mascara on your eyelashes
Lola who will soon go away
It was in april at five o'clock
At daylight that in your heart
A dragoon plunged his knife

Is this how men live?
And their kisses follow them in the distance
Léo Ferré's version:


Catherine Sauvage's version:


Monique Morelli's version:


All poems written by Louis Aragon

Monday, October 14, 2013

Yves Montand - Druon/Poll - The galley slave



Original Title: "Le Galérien"
Text: Maurice Druon
Music: Léo Poll

I remember, my mom loved me
and I'm in the galleys
I remember my mom said
But I didn't believe my mother

Don't roam in the gutters
Don't fight like a savage
Don't have fun like the birds
She told me to behave
I didn't kill, I didn't steal
I wanted to try my luck
I didn't kill, I didn't steal
I wanted everyday to be sunday

I remember my mom cried
As soon as I crossed the door
I remember how she cried
She didn't want me to go out

Always, always she said
Don't go see girls
Don't always do what you want
In prisons there are bars
I didn't kill, I didn't steal
But I believed Madeleine
I didn't kill, I didn't steal
I didn't want to make her sad

One day the King's soldiers
Will take you to the galleys
You'll go away three by three
Like they took away your father
You will have the head shaved
They will put you in chains
You will have the back broken
And I will die from sorrow

I didn't kill, I didn't steal
But I didn't believe my mother
I remember that she loved me
While I'm roying in the galleys

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Jacques Bertin - Gireaudoux/Jaubert - Tessa's song


Jacques Bertin's version

Original Title: "La Chanson de Tessa"
Date: 1934
Text: Jean Gireaudoux
Music: Maurice Jaubert
Stay here below my faithful heart
If you go away life is my eternal sorrow

If you die, the birds will stay quiet forever
If you are cold, no sun will burn
In the morning the joy of dawn won't wash my eyes anymore
All around your grave, the blossomed rosebushes
Would let their flowers hang and wither
Beauty will die with you, my only love

If I die, the birds will only keep quiet one evening
If I die, for another, one day, you will forget me
Again the joy of living then will wash your gaze
In the morning you will see the mountain lit up
On my grave offering you thousand flowers
Beauty will be revived without me, my only love

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Monique Morelli - Louis Aragon - Elsa



Text: Louis Aragon
Music: Léo Ferré
Is it thus sufficient for you to appear
of that look you have when tying
Your hair up, that touching gesture,
For me to revive and recognise
A world inhabited by the singing
Elsa my love, my youth

O strong and sweet like a wine
Alike to the sun of the windows
You give me back the caress of being
You give me back the thirst and the hunger
To live still and to know
our story until the end

It's a miracle to be together
The light on your cheek
That the wind plays around you
Everytime if I see you I tremble
Like for his first date
A young man looking like me

For the first time your mouth
For the first time your voice
from a wing to the peak of the woods
The tree simmers down to the stump
It's always the first time
When your dress while passing touches me

My life in truth begins
The day I met you
You whose arms were able to block
The atrocious way of my dementia
And who showed me the land
That kindness alone sows

You came at the heart of helplessness
to chase the bad fevers out
And I've blazed like a juniper
At Christmas between your fingers
I'm born really from your lip
My life originates from you

So, is it thus sufficient for you to appear
of that look you have when tying
Your hair up that touching gesture
For me to revive and recognise
A world inhabited by the singing
Elsa my love, my youth

Léo Ferré's version:

All poems written by Louis Aragon

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Jacques Douai - Prévert - Demons and marvels

Second song fo the video, starts at 2:35 (first is "Colchique dans les prés") :


Original Title: "Démons et merveilles"
Text: Jacques Prévert
Demons and marvels, winds and tides
far away already the sea withdrawn
and you like a seaweed
softly caressed by the wind
In the sands of the bed
you stir while dreaming

Demons and marvels, winds and tides
Far away already the sea withdrawn
but in your half opened eyes
two small waves remained

Demons and marvels, winds and tides
two small waves to drown myself

Extract from The Devil's Envoys (Visiteurs du Soir), sung by Jacques Jansen over the voice of actor Alain Cuny:

Cora Vaucaire's version:

Léo Ferré - Louis Aragon - The red poster


Ferré's version
slightly modified translation from wikipedia:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/L'affiche_rouge_(poem)
Text: Louis Aragon (inspired by Missak Manouchian's last letter)

You didn't beg for glory nor the tears
Nor the organ, nor the last rites
Eleven years already, how quickly eleven years go by
You made use simply of your weapons
Death does not dazzle the eyes of partisans.

You had your pictures on the walls of our cities
Black with beard and night, dishevelled, threatening
The poster, that seemed like a bloodstain,
because your names are hard to pronounce,
Sought to sow fear in the passers-by.

No one seemed to see you French by choice
People went without eyes for you the whole day,
But at time of curfew wandering fingers
Wrote under your pictures "Fallen for France"
And it made the gloomy mornings different.

Everything had the unvarying colour of frost
In late February for your last moments
And that's when one of you said calmly:
"Happiness to all, happiness to those who will survive,
I die without hate in me for the German people.

"Goodbye to sorrow, goodbye to pleasure. Farewell the roses,
Farewell life, the light and the wind.
Get married, be happy and think of me often
You who will remain in the beauty of things
When all will be over later in Erevan.

"A broad winter sun lights up the hill
How nature is beautiful and how my heart breaks
Justice will come on our triumphant footsteps,
My Mélinée, oh my love, my orphan girl,
And I tell you to live and to have a child."

There were twenty-three of them when the rifles flowered
Twenty-three who gave their hearts before it was time,
Twenty-three foreigners and yet our brothers
Twenty-three lovers of living to the point of dieing for it
Twenty-three who shouted "France!" as they fell.


Monique Morelli's version

Jacques Bertin's version

All poems written by Louis Aragon

Friday, October 4, 2013

Jacques Bertin - Claire


Hear :
The record is turning without playing
Do you hear the silence
A footstep is fading in the staircase
It's not completely night

Your girlfriend will come back tomorrow
Or it'll be another one no matter
with braids or Claire
With her blond hair and the accent from Quebec

There will be meetings tomorrow
and under the rain marches
for the Vietname or Greece
and you, you sign with both hands

You don't like shouts
though you don't like those who believe in it
Claire will maybe come
But you'd prefer to be alone

You'd walk on the sidewalk
along the march
You'd not shout the slogans
Claire doesn't dare to talk to you

Claire has small breasts
She doesn't like to stay naked after love
You are not sure if you love her
but she has a confident gaze

She says she learned to have an orgasm with you
You do not answer anything
You do not want her to imprison you
You stay aloof

Catch up Claire in the staircase
Tell her: Come back Claire
Hold her back, the night is falling
And the silence is scoffing at you
Claire, hold her back

Hear :
The record is turning without playing
Do you hear the silence
A footstep is fading in the staircase
It's not completely night
Il ne fait pas tout à fait nuit

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Dominique A - That absent gesture


Original Title: "Ce geste absent"
When she arrived
Dawn was a wreck
Of night wasted
Pretending to be unhindered
Miming the joy of exhilaration
Under the laughters of hazard warning lights
Who never go out really
Tonight you saw me differently.

Because of a moment.
of an eclipse.
of a retained gesture
It would have been better
Even an awkward movement
Even an offended gaze
Rather than that gesture avoided
That absent gesture

We allowed ourselves everything
We let ourselves go
We laughed to see the night chasing us
To hear it run after us breathless
But one moment your laugh
slipped, I've seen your sorrow
I continued laughing anyway
And I lost you right away

Because of a moment.
of an eclipse.
of a retained gesture
It would have been better
Even an awkward movement
Even an offended gaze
Rather than that gesture avoided
That absent gesture

When she arrived
Dawn was a wreck
A frozen laugh
Like a wound on a face
Un mirthless laugh, gone the exhilaration
Where hazard warning lights are burning
You look at me oddly
Tonight you saw me differently

Because of a moment.
of an eclipse.
of a retained gesture
It would have been better
Even an awkward movement
Even an offended gaze
Rather than that gesture avoided
That absent gesture

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Léo Ferré - If you go away


Original Title: "Si tu t'en vas"
If you go away
If you go away one day
You'll forget me
The love words
Do not travel
If you go away
The sea will still reach the shore
The wild flowers
In the heavy wheat
will still come...

If you go away
If you go away one day
You will forget me
The love wounds
Do not open
If you go away
The spring will still swell the river
The new loves
Toward the summer weather
will always go...

If you go away
If you go away one day
Everything will end
The things of love
Do not live
If you go away
Death will always triumph over the prime of life
It's her work
Despite the love
That always dies...

If you go away
If you go away one day
Remember
The love words
Do not fly away
If you go away
Beyond life toward the light
Where the prayers
Do not arrive anymore
They are lost...

If you go away
If you go away one day
In those areas
We'll talk about love
Like in the old days...
If it's possible!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Jacques Brel - Mathilde


My mother, here comes the time
To pray for my salvation
Mathilde came back
Coalman, you can keep your wine
Tonight, I'll drink my sorrow
Mathilde came back
You the servant, you Maria
Maybe you'd do better to change our sheets
Mathilde came back
My friends, do not leave me, no
Tonight I return to combat
Damned Mathilde since you are here

My heart, my heart do not race
Do as if you didn't know
That the Mathilde came back
My heart, stop repeating
She is more beautiful than before the summer
The Mathilde who came back
My heart stop shaking about
Remember she teared you up
The Mathilde who came back
My friends, do not leave me, no
Tell me, tell me, that I shouldn't
Damned Mathilde since you are here

And you my hands, stay calm
It's a dog coming back from the town
Mathilde came back
And you my hands, don't hit
All this does not concern you
Mathilde came back
And you my hands, do not shake anymore
Remember when I was crying on you.
Mathilde came back
You my hands, do not open
You my arms, do not stretch
Blasted Mathilde since you are here

My mother, stop praying
Your Jacques is going back to hell
Mathilde came back to me
Coalman, bring us wine
The one for weddings and feasts
Mathilde came back to me
You the servant, you the Maria
Go set my big bed with sheets
Mathilde came back to me
Friends, don't count on me anymore
I spit to the sky once more
My beautiful Mathilde since you are here, you are here!


Saturday, September 21, 2013

Jean Roger Caussimon - Like in Ostende


Jean-Roger Caussimon - Comme à Ostende par LeGreumeuleu
Original Title: "Comme à Ostende"
We were seeing the sea horses
rushing head first
and breaking their mane
in front of the deserted casino

The barmaid was eighteen years old
and I who is old like the winter
instead of drowning into a glass
I had a walk in the spring
of her almond shaped eyes
Nor grey nor green
Nor grey nor green
Like in Ostende
And like everywhere
When on the town
Falls the rain
And you wonder
if it's usefull
and above all
if it's worth it
If it's worth it
to live your life

I left toward my destiny
But here a smell of beer
of fries and of mussels in white wine
lured me in a tavern
There were comics, all red-faced
who guffawed, who talked loudly
and the beer, it was served
way before you could ask for one again
Yes it was raining
Yes it was raining
Like in Ostende
And like everywhere
when on the town
falls the rain
And you wonder
if it's usefull
and above all
if it's worth it
If it's worth it
to live your life

We went arm in arm
in the district with shop windows
full of feminine presence
you want to buy when you are drunk
But here at the very end of the raod
arrived a barrel organ player
with a terrific old tune
to make you blubbe a great deal
so well that all the guys in the group
got lost
got lost
Like in Ostende
And like everywhere
when on the town
falls the rain
And you wonder
if it's usefull
and above all
if it's worth it
If it's worth it
to live your life

Friday, September 20, 2013

Jacques Bertin - The English were bombing the bridges


Original Title: "Les anglais bombardaient les ponts"
The English were bombing the bridges
It was my father's wedding
The dance, the shouts, the wine harvests it was the war
The wedding night, on foot, exhausted very late
at the house of priest's aunt

My father who never went
to overturn girls in the vines
who looks at my mom and all the time that has passed
The straw that goes away in the Loire's current
To the bridges of Cé²

My father prepares plans
My mother claims he is mad
about an house even closer to the sun
"Your mother would be fine there on her knitting
In a garden very beautiful very sweet"

"But I do not like knitting"
My mother talks about the children
She says words about love and time
Like a cracked glass and who smiles
and living, it lasts a long time

And the father do you think to your son
with whom you talk of women
Your sister she'd better take a lover
God will forgive her the flower in the eye
We should not tell mother anything

Comon, the good lord's church is too small now
too many silences in mother's boxes
all-night vigils we'll make in two go the next moving out

It'll be a morning of fall
And rain on the yards
I'll be somewhere toward Bordeaux on a train
With strangers I talk and I'll not be home tomorrow

You are in your car, you think,
you father is alone at the rendez-vous.
The daylight is pale suddenly
Of your life you are ashame, a phone call
and it's not a lot

Your father is very far from his way
He walks alone and he is being talked to
He thinks about pictures where his son was there
The son, he says that he doesn't believe in god
but mother's face...

And the father so says to the good lord,
for once I agree
and if it's from you if he comes I'll not say anything
let him give me discreetly a few recent news from mother

It's a winter night very late
It's raining outside, the hotel is empty
The night manager has a very sweet smile
He says "my mother lends him her shawl"
And "What room do you want?"

²Les ponts de Cé is a town in France

Jean Ferrat - My France


Original Title: "Ma France"
From plains to forests, from small valleys to hills
From spring yet to be born to your dead seasons
From what I have seen to what I imagine
I'll never finish writing your song,
My France

To the big summer sun that bends the Provence
from the Britany's brooms to the Ardèche's heathers
Something in the air has that transparency
and that taste of happiness that makes my lip dry
My France

That tune of freedom beyond the borders
to the foreign people that gave vertigo
and from which you usurp the prestige today
She still answers to the name of Robespierre
My France

The one of the old Hugo holding from his exile
five year old children working in the mines
The one who built with her own hands your factories
The one whom Mr Tiers has said "Let's shoot her"
My France

Picasso holds the world at the end of his palette
from the lips of Eluard doves are taking off
They do not stop your artists prophets
to say that it's time that the adversity succumbs
My France

Their voices increase to only make one
The one that always pays for your crimes, your mistakes
by filling History and its communal graves
That I sing for ever the one of the workers
My France

The one that only owns in gold her white nights
For the stubbon fight of that daily time
From the newspaper that is sold the morning of a sunday
To the poster you paste at the wall of the following day
My France

Whether she comes up from the mines, goes down from the hills
The one that sings in me the beautiful, the rebellious
She holds the future tight in her slender hands
The one of thirty six to sixty eight stars
My France

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Léo Ferré - With time


Original Title: "Avec le temps"
With time
With the time, goes, everything goes away
We forget the face and we forget the voice
The heart, when it doesn't beat anymore, there is no point looking further
You have to let things go and it's fine

With time...
With time, goes, everything goes away
The other whom we adored, we looked for under the rain
The other we were making out at the bend of a glance
between the words, between the lines and under the blusher
Of a disguised oath which goes away to sleep
With time everything vanishes

With time...
With time, goes, everything goes away
Even the best memories it pulls one of those faces
like at the mall I rummage around the death's shelves
the saturday evening when the tenderness goes away on its own

With time...
With time, goes, everything goes away
The other in whom we believed for a cold, for a little something
The other to whom we gave wind and jewels
For whom we'd have sold our soul for a few pennies
In front of whom we dragged like the dogs drag
With time, goes, everything goes fine.

With time...
With time, goes, everything goes away
We forget about the passions and we forget the voices
that told you very low the words of the poor people
Don't come back too late, take care not to get cold

With time...
With time, goes, everything goes away
And we feel ourselves whitened like an exhausted horse
And we feel ourselves iced in a bed of fortune
And we feel ourselves alone maybe but cushy
And we feel ourselves swindled by the lost years
Then really...with time...we do not love anymore

Live Recording:

Philippe Léotard's version:

Serge Reggiani - My child, my love


Original Title: "Mon enfant, mon amour" or "Le petit garçon"
Tonight my little boy
My child, my love
Tonight, it's raining on the house
My child, my love
How you look like her!
We are staying both
We are going to play together
We are here both
alone

Tonight she doesn't come back
I do not know anymore, I don't know
She will write tomorrow maybe
We will have a letter
It's raining on the garden
I'm going to make some fire
I have no sorrow
We are here both
Alone

Wait, I know stories
Once upon a time
It's raining in my memory
I think, don't cry
Wait, I know stories
But it's a bit cold tonight
A story about people that love each others
A story about people that love each others

You will see
Don't go
Don't leave me

I do not know how to make fire anymore
My child, my love
I can't do much anymore
My boy, my love
How you look like her
We are here both
Lost among things
In this big room
Alone

We are going to play at war
And you'll fall asleep
Tonight she won't be here
I don't know anymore, I don't know
I don't like winter
There is no fire anymore
There is nothing else to do
but to play together
Alone

Wait, I know stories
Once upon a time
I don't have a memory anymore
I believe, don't cry
Wait, I know stories
But it's a bit late, tonight
A story of people that loved one another
And who played at war

Listen to me
She isn't there anymore
No...don't cry!


Live version:
The live version is a bit different and starts with the following words:
It's not me who sings
It's the flowers I drank
It's not me who laughs
It's the wine I drank
It's not me who cries
It's my love...lost

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Jacques Bertin - I have seen her eyes


Original Title: "J'ai vu ses yeux"
I have seen her eyes
A beautiful pond of willow woman
lost in a strange space
the faraway dream of the lands

And her lips of wet bird
so well that with my fingertips
I would have liked to wipe them

Like in the morning: a fountain
Her smile of overjoyed child
Clearer than the infante Isabella
And more lively than a swallow's throw
than the oriflamme of the morning
and the mirror of a siren
and the blond page of spring
and the alauda of the mutineers

Is it allowed to be so blond
that you make the wheat jealous
of bumps and breakings gathered
on the edge of his running path

And I hear them whisper
that God has abandonned them
but I, God, I'm grateful to him
for the beauty he gave me

Vivacious like a hip's thread
if the wind commanded him
Or if the wind commanded it
to the abandonned tenderness
Like a bouquet of shore's grasses
Damp and lukewarm without talking
Damp that makes me damp
Eyes between laughing and crying

And her joy with full white teeth
It's Chartres in the morning revived
Naïve and fierce street urchin
My fierce with the chin
My naïve with her mischiefs
My flower of snow and water
My child clown, my smeared
My freed korrigane
My blond child
My loved so much

I will learn to keep quiet
I will learn to listen
to the wind passing through her lips
And I'll become light
I'll become light

And then milky tokens of tenderness
I will learn to sooth
those worries of scared child
who is afraid of the dark and calls
And I will become shepherd

Monday, September 16, 2013

Jacques Bertin - One day, we die


Original Title: "Un jour, on meurt"
One day, we die of waiting for a day
like the one that dies out
of the long cancer of the obvious facts
in a gaze which lost its colours
where faithfulnesses cook slowly
With flies buzzing
And butter on a stall.

I want to know the fair,
the brass are burning my heart
I want the fantastic feast
which knows the departure and the blood
which knows the death which knows the sorrow
the uncertainty and the mornings
and that one never dies of sorrow

For the shapes and for the shadows
to know every colors
I'll go to the borders of doubt
look for the incredible house
for the pleasure of not knowing
to wash my gaze
with the waves of an unknown wind

At twenty years old you imagine
An amorous truth
Strong and difficult and pretty
But the female is dripping
with a laugh from the breast
with alcohol and garlick
Blood that spurts on the hands

Ten women come and kiss me
Love, frozen and without remorse
The absent body of the unfaithfuls
The cheeky female beauty
The breasts' detonation
They are undressing me and laugh
Lick me and twist my hands

I plunge and I love her and I love her
the lips of pleasure opened
with legs spread
breasts swaying upside down
O my desire O my madness
I run with my belly cut open
I die already gnawed by worms

We do not know very well where madness starts,
where life ends
I have the eyes bleeding, that are laughing
I've looked too much I do not see anything
but that mad woman hugging me
with her heavy damp kiss
Stay at home, do not burn anything!

I know there is nothing to see
The madwoman bursted my eyes
But I have the most beautiful eyes in the world
And all of you are evading my gaze

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Jacques Bertin - To the one I won't see anymore


Original Title: "A Celle que je ne verrai plus"

And from very far I wish you
a curtainless house
An angelus of lace
and the dress of your loves

The river like a train
like in its gardens the Seine
And remain as you were

Then the laid down brooms of the sun
where blue roads hurtle down
And on your eyes that heat

I offer you this, no matter
if I never see you again
Think of me in every thing

A friend for the rich rhyme
in the grass fire of summer
A child for the opened rhyme
And remain as you were

Your love in its arms takes you
And your life it holds back
like to the wind a paper hat

And me in my loves I take you
Like a picture you look at
when you are alone in the cafés

Remember, I remember
when you were under the roof of shadow
the opened street of summer

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Jacques Bertin - Louvigné-du-Désert


Louvigné-du-Désert is a small town in Britany, France.
Louvigné-du-désert: Let's stop, we will drink
in a small café open to the first colds of my memory
To the vanished friends, already lost among the shadows
To those I loved so much I believe and I forgot

I'd invite a few poets to make a nice funeral
A few octosyllables and I'm alone to drink to the event
We would tell eachother while talking a bit slowly the story
of the time going away, of oblivion that makes the music in front of us

And then we would content ourselves with a few things, a little wine
a word that grazes the grass of the sun and it's in vain
I only have poets as friends and I'll go back home by the pathways
like an extinguished cigarette, relit and that is going off

Friday, September 13, 2013

Serge Reggiani - Moustaki - This evening, my love


Original Title: "Ce soir mon amour"
Text: George Moustaki
This evening my love, I do not love you anymore
You are further than the distance between us
And even more absent because you are nowhere
More a stranger than the first to come along

This evening my love I do not look for you anymore
Among my memories at the bottom of my memory
I do not wait for you anymore on the platform of any station
I barely remember having waited for you there

I know that we were drinking wine after love
That our nights started when the day rose
Like a torrent of ebony your hair on your neck
And your hurt gaze when you make sheep eyes

This evening my love I do not cheat on you anymore
with that girl sleeping by my side
I was alone I asked her to stay
I'm alone very often and I get used to it

This evening my love I do not miss you anymore
I do not miss you. I miss loving
not being useless, inanimate
having nothing to lose and having lost everything

I know your madness I know your modesty
I know that we look alike like brother and sister
I know your smell, I know your perfume
I know you by heart and I do not know anything nomore

About you my love whom I do not love anymore
without succeeding to finally feel free
Alike to a dancer who would lose balance
Like a prince into disgrace, like a fallen angel.

Jacques Bertin - You Talk About Life


Original Title: "Tu parles de la vie"
You talk about life
like one bubbles in a glass

Let's drink quickly
and give the same again please!
You still have the enormous laugh
And the way of the soldier

You know that somewhere
A girl is calling for you
And almost naked already
with sovereign hips
In linen and horses processions
and emblems
You go up the stairs
Everything goes quiet
we hear your steps

But the night, sometimes,
The night when you wake up
It's like in the cinema
Everything would stop
The theater lights up again
And you are scared

The light is of the world's end
And you stood up
With a dreadful laugh
that the audience does not hear
You suffocate, you stick to the window
the arms stretched out sideways
One day and with a sharp knock you break the window
you hang yourself from it

The man who was laughing he knew
Everything is absence
The crowd withdraws and doesn't dare to cry
There are eskimo pie papers in the aisles.

Léo Ferré - Rimbaud - The Drunken Ship


Original Title: "Le bateau ivre"
As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

In the furious lapping of the tides
Me, that other winter, more deaf than children's brains
I ran! And the started peninsula,
never lived more triumphing hubbub

The tempest blessed my maritime awakenings.
Lighter than a cork I dansed on the floods
named eternal rollers of victims
Ten nights, without regretting the silly eye of the lanterns

As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

Sweeter than to the children the flesh of the sour apples
The green water penetrated my fir hull
And of blue wine stains and of vomits
washed me, scattered rudder and grapplings

And then, I had a bath in the poem
of the sea, instilled with stars, and milky
devouring the green azures where, wan waterlines
and delighted, a thoughtful drowned person sometimes goes down

Where suddenly dying the made blue, delirium
And slow rythms under the day's gleams
Stronger than alcohol, vaster than our lyres
ferment the biter freckles of love.

I know the skies bursting in lightnings, and the waterspouts
And the undertows, and the currents, I know the evening,
The exalted dawn like a dove people
And I've seen a few times what man thought seeing
And I've seen a few times what man thought seeing
And I've seen a few times what man thought seeing

As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

I've seen the low sun, stained with mystical horrors,
Illuminating long purple freezings,
Like actors of very antique dramas.
The floods rolling their shutter's shudders in the distance

I've dreamt the green night about the dazzled snows
Kisses slowly rushing to the eyes of the seas
The circulation of the unprecedented saps
And the yellow and blue awakening of the singing phosphorus !

As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

I've followed for full months, alike the nasty remarks
hysterical, the swell setting out to conquer the reefs
Without thinking that the luminous feet of the Marys
Could force the muzzle to the wheezy Ocean !

I've knocked, you know, incredible Floridas
Mingling to flowers eyes of panthers with skins
Of men! Rainbows braced like bridles
Under the seas horizon, to dreary herds!

I've seen the huge swamps fermenting, creel
Where rotens in the rushes a whole Leviathan!
Collapses of water in the middle of lulls
and the faraway's toward the cataracting abysses!

Glaciers, silver suns, mother-of-pearls waves, fiery skies!
Hideous groundings at the end of the brown gulfs
where the giant snakes devoured by water sticks
cherish crooked trees with black perfumes!

As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts.

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

I'd have liked to show to the children those sea breams
of the blue stream, those golden fishes, those singing fishes
Flowers' foams have cradled my departures from harbours
And ineffable wings have winged me at times.

Sometimes, martyr weary of the poles and of the zones,
the sea whose sobbing was making my rolling sweet
was coming in toward me her shadow flowers with yellow suction pads
and I was staying like a woman on her knees...

As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts.

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

Peninsula, tossing on my tacks the quarrels
and the droppings of the gossiping birds with blond eyes.
And I was sailing when through my frail bounds
drowned persons came down to sleep, backwards!

Now I, lost ship under the hair of the coves
threw by the hurricane in the birdless ether
I whose the Monitors and the Hansa sailing ships
wouldn't have recovered the drunken from water skeleton

Free, smoking, riden by purple fogs
I who was making a hole through the reddening sky like a wall
who is carrying, exquisite jams to the good poets
sun lichens and azure mucus

Who was running, stained of electric half-moons
Mad plank, escorted of the black seahorses
When the july's were bringing down with cudgel hits
the ultramarine skies with burning funnels

As I was going down impassive rivers
I felt I was no more guided by the haulers
High pitched red Indians had targetted them
Having nailed them naked to the colored posts.

I was uncaring of all the crews
Carrying flemish wheats or english cotons.
When, with my hauleurs, they had finished kicking a racket
The rivers let me go down where I wanted.

I who was trembling, feeling the moans from fifty leagues
the rut of the Behemots and the thick maelstroms.
Eternal spinner of the blue immobilities
I look back at Europe with its ancient parapets.

I've seen sidereal archipelagoes and islands
whose delirious skies are opened to the sailors :
— Is it during those bottomless nights that you sleep and go into exile,
Millions of golden birds, O future vigour ?

But, true, I've cried too much! The Dawns are distressing.
Every moon is dreadful and every sun bitter :
The acrid love swelled me with intoxicating torpors.
O let my keel burst! O let me go to the sea !

If I desire a water from Europe, it's the puddle
Black and cold where toward the balmy dusk
A squatting child, full of sadness, let go
a frail ship like a butterfly of may.

I'm not bathed of your languidnesses, anymore O waves,
take away their trail to the coton carriers,
Neither crossing the pride of the flags and flames,
Nor swimming under the horrible eyes of the pontoons

Philippe Léotard version:

Mouloudji - We have to live

Original Title: " Faut vivre " Despite the big eyes of the void "It's to better eat you, child" And the silence...