Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Yves Jamait - What the hell are you doing?


Original Title: "Qu'est-ce que tu fous?"
What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?
You must have, I imagine,
A reason that is yours
for not being here
I am sure he gets round you

I am sure he looks at you
With, at the deep of the eyes,
Promises of love
No matter the pledge he disguises
You do not notice a thing
in this farmyard.

Of course he must be sweet
And charming and amiable
And flatter your attire
When I, I am here pitiful
Imbecile and envious
Hoping your come back

What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?
You must have, I imagine,
A reason that is yours
for not being here
I am sure he gets round you

It's not something to do
to put one's behind
on soft cushions
When I am here
Ass on the ground
Chanting prayers
To I do not know which god

You who never have a drink
The cocktail he is serving you
Is making your eyes shine
I, I vomit my anger
And drown it in beer
Making dark wishes

What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?
You must have, I imagine,
A reason that is yours
for not being here
I am sure he gets round you

I remember yet of the time
when we were happy
When we were lovers
Everyday, both
Inseparable
But how far it's that time
I am not happy anymore
I am not your lover anymore
I am alone and shitty
Beyond repair

It's a bouquet of words in flower
that will come to caress the curves of your body
But devoid of any decency, his hands to confirm
And with your consent

What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?
You must have, I imagine,
A reason that is yours
for not being here
I am sure he gets round you

What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?
You must have, I imagine,
A reason that is yours
for not being here
I am sure he gets round you

What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?
You must have, I imagine,
A reason that is yours
for not being here

What the hell are you doing without me?
What the hell are you doing there?

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Jacques Brel - I am a summer evening


Jacques Brel - Je suis un soir d'été
Original Title: "Je suis un soir d'été"
And the sub-prefecture
Celebrates the sub-prefect's wife
Under the faceted chandelier
Orange squashes are raining
And lukewarm champagnes
And icy remarks
Of glum females
of those who are made employees of the state

I am a summer evening

At the open windows
The diners of the families
Push back their plates
And say that it's hot
The men throw belches
of Teutonic knights
The tablecloths fall into crumbs
over the balconies

I am a summer evening

At the blurred terraces
A few damp drinkers
Talk of nags
And of old perfidious women
It's the time when the suspenders
Hold the present
of the spilled passers-by
And of the alcoholised ones.

I am a summer evening

Heavy lover women
With smell of kitchen
Wander their bosoms
On the sides of the Meuse
They are missing a soldier
For summer to feast
And climbs somehow
To the top of their stockings²

I am a summer evening

At the fountains the old men
bedecked with references
Turn back their childhood
with small rainy steps
They laugh of a whole tooth
To bite into the silence
Around the girls who dance
To the death of a spring

I am a summer evening

Heat is vertebrating
It rivers drunkenness's
Summer has its big masses
And the night celebrates them
The city to the four winds
Twinkles the remorse,
Useless and passing,
Of not being an harbour.

I am a summer evening

²In French "Low" and "Stockings" are said the exact same way (to the top of their lows)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Jacques Bertin - Luc Bérimont - I wait for you at the gates of the roads


Original Title: "Je t'attends aux grilles des routes"
Text: Luc Bérimont
I wait for you at the gates of the roads
At the crossroads of the wind of the sleep
I shout your name from the bottom of the holds
From the birdless marshes
From the bottom of that cast iron desert
Where I lay one by one my steps
I wait for the source of your arms
Of your hair of your breath

I wait for the source of your arms
Of your hair of your breath
You are terrible You chain me up
You devastate me You make me

I wait for you like the forest
Inextricable entangled
Wooven with foxes and jays
But which the morning makes sing.

I wait for you at the gates of the roads
At the crossroads of the wind of the sleep
I shout your name from the bottom of the holds
From the birdless marshes
From the bottom of that cast iron desert
Where I lay one by one my steps
I wait for the source of your arms
Of your hair of your breath

Monday, November 17, 2014

Monique Morelli - Louis Aragon - Paris 42


Text: Louis Aragon
A song that speaks of an incurable ill
Sadder than at midnight the plaza of Italy
Alike to Point-du-Jour for the melancholy
More dreams at the fingers than the sandman
Announcing pleasure like a merchant of oblivion

A vulgar and sweet song where the voice lowers
Like a one night love doubting of the next day
A song that takes women by the hand
A song that is being said under the Barbès metro
And that changes at Etoile and goes down at Jasmin²

It's Paris that shadow theater that I carry
My Paris that couldn't completely be taken away from me
Not more than one could take to lips their shout
What had been required to threw me out of it
Tear me the heart and you will see Paris in it.

It's of that Paris that I made my poems
My words are of the weird colour of those roofs
The throat of the pigeons are cooing and glistening there
I have written more of you Paris than of myself
And more than of growing old suffered to be without you

Who hasn't seen the day rising up on the Seine
Ignores what is that heartbreak
When caught in the act the night fails itself
Defends itself, comes undone the red eyes obscene
And Notre-Dame comes out of the waters like a magnet

The aorta of the Pont Neuf shivers like an orchestra
Where I hear beginning the wine of my twenties
There blows here a wind that comes from the times of yesteryear
To die in the hair of the equestrian statue
The city like an heart opens itself double-doors.

The wind will whisper my verses to the waste grounds
It will brush against the benches where no one sat
We will hear it cry on the quays of Passy
And the bridges repeating the promise of the rings
will go away engaged to the following rhymes

Paris wakes up and I to find those myths back
That were burning our blood in our obscurity
I will put in my hands my irritated face
Let the song be reborn that the birds imitate
And which answers Paris when one says liberty

² Parisian metro stations

Jacques Marchais' version:

All poems written by Louis Aragon

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Jacques Brel - The flat land



Original Title: "Le plat pays"
With the North Sea for last wasteland
And waves of dunes to stop the waves
And vague rocks which the tides go past
And which have forever the heart at low tide
With an infinite amount of mist to come
With the east wind listen to it hold
The flat land which is mine.

With cathedrals for only mountains
And black church towers for greasy poles
Where stone devils take down the clouds
With the passing days as only journey
And paths of rain for only goodbye
With the west wind listen to it want
The flat land which is mine.

With a sky so low that a canal got lost
With a sky so low that it makes humility
With a sky so grey that a canal hanged itself
With a sky so grey that it has to be forgotten
With the north wind that comes to tear itself apart
With the north wind listen to it creak
The flat land which is mine.

With a little bit of Italy that would come down the Scheldt
With Frida the blond when she becomes Margot
When the sons of November comes back to us in May
When the plain is smoking and trembles under July.
When the wind is at laughing,
When the wind is at the wheat,
When the wind is from the south, listen to it sing
The flat land which is mine.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Serge Reggiani - Paris my rose


Original Title: "Paris ma rose"
Pass the days and pass the weeks
Nor the time gone by nor the loves come back
Under the Mirabeau bridge runs the Seine.

Where has Paris my rose gone?
Paris over Seine the curly?
Are gone taking the key away.
The nonchalants along the quays.
Paris my rose.

Where are they gone Villon and his girls?
Where is he gone Jenin the Void²
And the green path, what has become of it.
It that snaked near the Bastille?
Where is Paris the grey gone?
Paris over mist, the wet ?

It's gone Paris the forgotten.
Gone on tiptoe.
Paris the grey.

Where are they gone those who fraternize.
With the high walls and the graffitis?
Those suns of chalk where are they gone?
Which were making love to the walls of the churches?

Where is it gone Paris the red?
The commune of the barefeet
Got lost toward Aubervilliers
Or toward Nanterre, stuck in the mud.
Paris the red.

Where is he gone Clement of the cherries?
Is it closed the long pain.
Of the time when the guys had such a big heart
That one could only see him at the holes of the shirts?
Where is gone Paris I love?
Paris I love and which is no more.


²Jenin L'Avenu (character of poetry of Villon)

All songs by Reggiani.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Jean Ferrat - My beautiful love


Original Title: "Mon bel amour"
My beautiful solemn love
My beautiful play love
My beautiful well-behaved love
As you want it.
My beautiful flame love.
My beautiful fire love.
My beautiful woman love
My beautiful God love
My beautiful love of hurt of living
Between my hands only surprised
To be at the moment where you surrender
Like those pages of those books
That we never finish cutting.
My beautiful feast love
My beautiful mourning love
My beautiful great love
Lionness and roe deer.
My beautiful dream love.
My beautiful watch love.
Your love gnaws at me
Like it fills me with wonder
My beautiful love of dark flamev The moment after destroyed
Just at your eyelid that shadow
and here I am figure without number
And like a stone without the fruit.
My beautiful mauve love
My beautiful blue love
My beautiful fawn love
As much as you want it.
My beautiful drama love
My beautiful play love
My beautiful woman love
My beautiful God love.

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Charles Aznavour - And yet


Original Title: "Et pourtant"
One fine morning, I know that I will wake up
Differently than any other day
And my heart freed finally from our love
And yet, And yet

Without a remorse, without a regret
I will leave, straight in front of me
Without hope of return
Far from the eyes, far from the heart
I will forget forever
And your body, and your arms and your voice,
My love

And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet

I will tear, without a tear, without a shout
The secret links that are tearing my skin
Freeing me from you to find rest
And yet, And yet

I will walk toward other skies, other countries
While forgetting your cruel coldness
The hands full of love, I will offer to happiness
And the days, and the nights, and the life
Of my heart

And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet

I will eventually have to find my reason back,
my lack of concern and my fits of joy
To leave forever to escape from you
And yet, And yet

In other arms, when I will forget up to your name
When I will be able to rethink the future
You will become for me just a distant memory
When my sorrow, and my fear and my cries
Will end

And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet, yet
You are the only one I love
And yet

Friday, November 7, 2014

Jacques Brel - The port of Amsterdam


The song has already been translated, even sung in English by David Bowie (you can find Bowie's version here) but the lyrics differs for the sake of the song. It's a very powerful song so I am trying to give the most colourful yet literal translation.
Original title: "Amsterdam"

In the port of Amsterdam
There are the sailors who sing
The dreams that haunt them
Off Amsterdam
In the port of Amsterdam
There are the sailors who sleep
Like oriflammes along the bleak banks

In the port of Amsterdam
There are the sailors who die
Full of beer and of tragedies
At first lights
In the port of Amsterdam
There are the sailors who are born
In the thick warmth
Of the ocean languors

In the port of Amsterdam
There are the sailors who eat,
On too white tablecloths,
Dripping fishes.
They show you teeth
to bite into the fortune,
To wane the moon,
To gobble up shrouds.

And it smells of cod
even in the heart of the fries
That their big hands invite
To come back in extra
Then get up while laughing
In a sound of tempest
shut their flies again
And go out while belching

In the port of Amsterdam
There are sailors who dance
While rubbing their paunch
on the paunch of the women
And they turn and they dance
Like spit out suns
In the torn up sound
Of a rancid accordion

They twist round their neck
So they can better hear themselves laugh
Until all of a sudden the accordion exhales
Then, of a solemn gesture
Then, the gaze proud
They bring back their Batavians
under the bright light

In the port of Amsterdam
There are sailors who drink
And who drink and drink again
And who drink once more
And they drink to the health
Of the whores of Amsterdam
whom there are many moreover
In short, they drink to the ladies
Who give them their pretty body
Who give them their virtue
For one gold coin
And when they have well drunk
Stick their nose to the sky
Blow their nose in the stars
And they piss like I cry
On the unfaithful women

In the port of Amsterdam
In the port of Amsterdam
another version here

Gabriel Yacoub - The rewarded wooer - How could you want for a person to sing?


Traditional song (1555)
Original Title: "Le soupirant recompensé/Comment vouloir qu'une personne chante?"
Text: Roland de Lassus
How could you want for a person to sing
When he does not have his heart free?
Let sing those whom are content with love
And leave me, and leave me in my misfortune cry!
And leave me, and leave me in my misfortune cry!

Cry my eyes, cry my fatal fate
I lost everything when losing my Iris
Cruel destiny take what I have left
And give me back, and give me back what you took from me
And give me back, and give me back what you took from me

Take my heart and give me yours:
It's yours, I do not claim anything no more;
But if I learn that you love another
Straight away, straight away, I will take mine back
Straight away, straight away, I will take mine back

What will be required, beautiful Iris, to please you?
Is my blood required? It's ready to flow.
But if my blood can not satisfy you,
Is my death required? Is my death required? You only have to speak
Is my death required? Is my death required? You only have to speak

After death, you will cry, I swear;
You will love me, it won't be time anymore.
You will walk over my grave
While regretting, while regretting the most faithful lover.
While regretting, while regretting the most faithful lover.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Jacques Bertin - A Barn



Original Title: "Une Grange"
Maybe, through the songs
like through the holes in the roof
Of that old collapsed barn
Calling for the coolness of the fingers

Of the thunderstorm or love, we see
Maybe my life which is calling
Oh you know how beautiful she was
Former companions of my joy

Seeing that it's true, everything is image.
We are the image of ourselves
And in the palm of the message
You see the mark of the nails.

Oh the lit up fires of the age!
Do not get ill, most of all.
And come back, get dry, behave
Death is raining everywhere.

Killed horses, shadow of the disasters
Future with broken legs
Eternity fallen from the stars
With forms of burnt chinese lanterns

Oh the bombs on the abbey!
Oh the fire in the orchard!
The earth is that dirty apron
And the colors took their revenge

Seeing that it's true, everything is lies
The frank gaze most of all
And a silver cancer is gnawing at me
Since death is roaming everywhere

Let me be that ancient barn
Without pain at the bottom of the summers
And of which a little bit of song leans
And I do not suffer from loving anymore!

Short summer and bad deal
Burning fast, she was in a hurry!
Then you see the roof that shivers
And the old soul moving a little.

Monique Morelli - Villon - Ballad to pray Our Lady


Original Title: "Ballade pour prier Notre Dame"
Text: François Villon (written for his mother)
Lady of the sky, landed regent,
Empress of the infernal swamps
Receive me, your humble Christian,
Let me be contained among your chosen
Even though I had never any worth
The goods from you, my Lady and my Mistress
Are way bigger than I am sinner
Without those goods soul can not be rewarded
with the heavens. I am not talkative about it:
In this faith I want to live and die.

To your Son say that I am his;
From him let my sin be abolished
Forgive me like you did to the Egyptian
Or like he did to the cleric Theophilus,
who by you was quits and absolved
No matter how many promised he had made to the devil
Preserve me to ever do that
Virgin carrying, without incurring rupture of
The sacrament that is celebrated during the mass:
In this faith I want to live and die.

Woman, I am poor and ancient,
Who nothing knows; never letters have read.
See at the monastery, of which I am parishioner
Painted paradise, where are harps and lutes,
And one hell where damned are boiled
One scares me, the other joy and jubilation
To have the joy makes me, high Goddess,
To whom sinners must all appeal to,
Filled with faith, without feint nor laziness:
In this faith I want to live and die.

You carried, worthy Virgin, princess,
Jesus ruling who has no end nor rest.
The All-Mighty, taking our weakness,
left the heavens and cam to rescue us,
Offered to death his dear youth;
Our Lord is such, I confess it so:
In this faith I want to live and die.

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...