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Songs

Chanson de printemps (1860)

Chanson de printemps

Viens, enfant, la terre s’éveille
Le soleil rit au gazon vert!
La fleur au calice entr’ouvert
Reçoit les baisers de l’abeille.
Respirons cet air pur!
Enivrons-nous d’azure!
Là-haut sur la colline
La neige de pommiers
Parfume les sentiers.
Viens, enfant, voici l’hirondelle
Qui passe en chantant dans les airs.
Ouvre ton âme aux frais concerts
Éclos sous la feuille nouvelle.
Un vent joyeux, là-bas,
Frémit dans les lilas,
C’est la saison bénie,
C’est l’amour, c’est la vie!
Qu’un fleuve de bonheur
Inonde notre cœur!
Viens, enfant, c’est l’heure charmante
Où l’on voudrait rêver à deux.
Mêlons nos rêves et nos yeux
Sous cette verdure naissante.
Salut, règne des fleurs,
Des parfums, des couleurs!
Les suaves haleines
Voltigent sur les plaines,
Le cœur épanoui
Se perd dans l’infini!

Spring song

Come, child, the earth's awakening,
The sun is smiling on the green grass!
With its calyx half-opened
The flower receives the bee's kiss.
Let us breathe this pure air!
Let us get drunk on the blue sky!
Up there on the hill
Come let us gather hawthorn!
The snow of apple-trees
Fills the paths with fragrance.
Come, child, there's the swallow
Singing on the wing,
Open your soul to the fresh strains
Bursting from beneath young leaves.
A joyful wind over there
Rustles in the lilac,
It is the blest season,
It is love, it is life!
Let a stream of rapture
Flood our hearts!
Come, child, it is the charmed hour,
When we would dream together,
Let us mingle our dreams and our vows
Beneath this greening foliage.
Hail to the kingdom of flowers,
Of scent and colour!
Gentle breezes
Move over the plains,
The radiant heart
Loses itself in infinity!
Translation © Richard Stokes, from A French Song Companion (Oxford, 2000)

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Composer

Charles-François Gounod was a French composer, best known for his Ave Maria, based on a work by Bach, as well as his opera Faust.

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About Oxford Lieder

Oxford Lieder is one of the world's leading promoters of song and the winner of a prestigious Royal Philharmonic Society Award. The focal point of each year is the two-week Oxford Lieder Festival in October.

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