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Chabrier - L'île heureuse

L'île heureuse

Chabrier (1890)

Dans le golfe aux jardins ombreux,
Des couples blonds d'amants heureux
Ont fleuri les mâts langoureux
De ta galère,
Et, caressé de doux été,
Notre beau navire enchanté
Vers des pays de volupté
Fend l'onde claire!

Vois, nous sommes les souverains
Des lumineux déserts marins,
Sur les flots ravis et sereins
Berçons nos rêves!
Tes pâles mains ont le pouvoir
D'embaumer au loin l'air du soir,
Et dans tes yeux je crois revoir
Le ciel des grèves!

Mais là-bas, là-bas, au soleil,
Surgit le cher pays vermeil
D'où s'élève un chant de réveil
Et d'allégresse;
C'est l'île heureuse aux cieux légers
Où, parmi les lys étrangers,
Je dormirai dans les vergers,
Sous ta caresse.

Éphraïm Mikhaël

The happy isle


In the gulf with shady gardens,
blond couples of happy lovers
have placed flowers on the languorous masts
of your galley,
and, caressed by gentle summer,
our fine enchanted ship,
towards countries of charm,
is cleaving the clear water!

See, we are the sovereigns
of the luminous marine deserts,
on the delighted and serene waves
let us rock our dreams!
Your pale hands have the power
to perfume from afar the evening air,
and in your eyes I imagine I see again
the sky of the shores!

But over there, over there, in the sun
appears the dear vermilion country
from whence a song of awakening
and joy is rising;
it is the happy isle with buoyant skies
where, among the strange lilies,
I shall sleep in the orchards,
beneath your caress.

© translated by Christopher Goldsack

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