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Chanson de mer • Song
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The English version presented below is a literal, word-for-word translation. It attempts to preserve the poet's word order as far as possible, for a better appreciation of the composer's musical treatment of individual words and phrases.

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Ton sourire infini m'est cher

Comme le divin pli des ondes,

Et je te crains quand tu me gronds,

Comme la mer.

 

L'azur de test grands yeux m'est cher:

C'est un lointain que je regarde

Sans cesse et sans y prendre garde,

Un ciel de mer.

 

Ton courage léger m'est cher:

C'est un souffle vif où ma vie

S'emplit d'aise et se fortifie,

L'air de la mer.

 

Enfin ton être entier m'est cher,

Toujours nouveau, toujours le même;

Ô ma Néréide, je t'aime

Comme la mer!

 

Sully-Prudhomme

 

Your boundless smile is dear to me

Like the divine fold of the waves,

And I fear you when you scold me,

Like the sea.

 

The azure of your large eyes is deaer to me.

It is a distance that I look into

Without ceasing and without heeding,

A sky of the sea.

 

Your light courage is dear to me:

It is a lively breath in which my life

Fills itself easily and is fortified,

The air of the sea.

 

Finally, your whole being is dear to me,

Always new, always the same;

O my Nerid, I love you

Like the sea!

 

Recorded 1 October 2008

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