Melodie Treasury Banner

Jazz dans la nuit

Roussel (1928)

Le bal, sur le parc incendié,
Jette ses feux multicolores,
Les arbres flambent, irradiés
Et les rugissements sonores
Des nègres nostalgiques, fous,
Tangos nerveux, cuivres acerbes,
Étouffent le frôlement doux
Du satin qui piétine l'herbe.
Que de sourires épuisés,
A l'ombre des taillis complices,
Sous la surprises des baisers
Consentent et s'évanouissent...
Un saxophone, en sanglotant
De longues et très tendres plaintes
Berce à son rythme haletant
L'émoi des furtives étreintes.
Passant, ramasse ce mouchoir
Tombé d'un sein tiède ce soir,
Et qui se cache sous le lierre;
Deux levres rouges le signèrent,
dans le fard, de leur dessin frais.
Il te livrera, pour secrets,
Le parfum d'une gorge nue
Et la bouche d'une inconnue.

René Dommange

Jazz by night

 

The dance throws its multi-coloured fires
on the blazing park,
the trees are aflame, lit up,
and the sonorous bellowing
of the wild, nostalgic negroes,
terse tangos, harsh brass,
stifle the gentle rustling
of the satin as it tramples the grass.
So many exhausted smiles,
in the shadow of the abetting bushes,
surprised by the kisses
consent and fade away...
A saxophone, sobbing
long and very tender laments,
gently rocks the rapture of the furtive
embraces to its breathless beat.
Passer-by, pick up this handkerchief,
which, fallen from a warm breast this evening,
is hiding beneath the ivy;
Two red lips signed it
with their fresh pattern in rouge.
It will betray, as secrets,
the perfume of a bare bosom
and an unknown woman's lips.

© translated by Christopher Goldsack

This translation is offered for study purposes. If seeking to use it for concert programmes please do let me know, and if for commercial purposes please consider making a small donation towards the upkeep of the site.