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La rose

Fauré (1890)

Je dirai la rose au plis gracieux.
La rose est le souffle embaumé des dieux,
Le plus cher souci des muses divines.
Je dirai ta gloire, ô charme des yeux,
O fleur de Kypris, reine des colines!
Tu t'épanouis entre les beaux doigts
De l'aube écartant les ombres moroses;
L'air bleu devient rose, et rose les bois;
La bouche et le sein des vierges sont roses!
Heureuse la vierge aux bras arrondis
Qui dans les halliers humides te cueille!
Heureux le front jeune où tu resplendis!
Heureuse la coupe où nage ta feuille!
Ruisselante encor du flot paternel,
Quand de la mer bleue Aphrodite éclose,
Étincela nue aux clartés du ciel,
La Terre jalouse enfanta la rose;

Et l'Olympe entier, d'amour transporté,
Salua la fleur avec la Beauté!

Leconte de Lisle

The rose

 

I shall tell of the rose with graceful folds.
The rose is the perfumed breath of the gods,
the most cherished care of the divine muses.
I shall tells of your glory, o charm of the eyes,
o flower of Kypris, queen of the hills!
You blossom between the beautiful fingers
of dawn pushing aside the dismal shadows;
The blue air becomes rosy, and rosy the woods;
The lips and the breasts of virgins are rosy!
Happy the virgin with rounded arms
who plucks you amid the moist thickets!
Happy the young brow from which you shine!
Happy the cup in which your leaf swims!
When, still dripping with the paternal waters,
from the blue sea Aphrodite emerged,
sparkled naked in the brightness of the sky,
the jealous Earth childed the rose;

and all Olympus, transported with love,
greeted the flower with Beauty!

© translated by Christopher Goldsack

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