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Fauré - La fée aux chansons

La fée aux chansons

Fauré (1883)

Il était une fée,
D'herbes folles coiffée,
Qui courait les buissons,
Sans s'y laisser surprendre,
En avril, pour apprendre
Aux oiseaux leurs chansons.

Lorsque geais et linottes
Faisaient de fausses notes,
En récitant leurs chants,
La fée, avec constance,
Gourmandait d'importance
Ces élèves méchants.

Sa petite main nue,
D'un brin d'herbe menue
Cueilli dans les halliers,
Pour stimuler leur zèle,
Fouettait sur leurs ailes
Ces mauvais écoliers.

Par un matin d'automne,
Elle vient et s'étonne
De voir les bois déserts.
Avec les hirondelles,
Ses amis fidèles
Avaient fui dans les airs.

Et, tout l'hiver, la fée,
D'herbe morte coiffée,
Et comptant les instants,
Sous les forêts immenses,
Compose des romances
Pour le prochain printemps.

Armand Silvestre

The song fairy


There was a fairy,
coifed with wild grasses,
who ran through the bushes,
without ever being caught there by surprise,
in April, to teach
the birds their songs.

When the jays and the linnets
sang wrong notes
while singing their songs,
the fairy steadfastly
reprimanded these naughty students
with authority.

Her little bare hand,
with a slim blade of grass,
plucked in the thickets,
whipped these bad pupils
upon their wings
to stimulate their enthusiasm.

On one autumn morning
she comes and is astonished
to see the woods deserted.
Along withith the swallows
her faithful friends
had fled into the air.

And, all winter long, the fairy,
coifed with dead grass,
and counting the moments,
beneath the vast forests,
composes romances
for the next spring.

© translated by Christopher Goldsack

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