Quand ton sourire me surprit,
Je sentis frémir tout mon être;
Mais ce qui domptait mon esprit,
Je ne pus d'abord le connaître.
Quand ton regard tomba sur moi,
Je sentis mon âme se fondre;
Mais ce que serait cet émoi,
Je ne pus d'abord en répondre.
Ce qui me vainquit à jamais,
Ce fut un plus douloureux charme,
Et je n'ai su que je t'aimais
Qu'en voyant ta première larme!
When your smile caught me unawares,
I felt my whole being shiver;
but what was taming my spirit,
I did not at first know.
When your gaze fell on me,
I felt my soul melt;
but what this emotion was
I could not at first tell.
That which conquered me for ever
was a more sorrowful charm,
and I only knew that I loved you
upon seeing your first tear!
© translated by Christopher Goldsack
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