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Je me suis embarqué (1921) Op. 118 no.2

Part of a series or song cycle:

L’horizon chimérique (Op. 118)

Je me suis embarqué

Je me suis embarqué sur un vaisseau qui danse
Et roule bord sur bord et tangue et se balance.
Mes pieds ont oublié la terre et ses chemins;
Les vagues souples m’ont appris d’autres cadences
Plus belles que le rythme las des chants humains.
À vivre parmi vous, hèlas! avais-je une âme?
Mes frères, j’ai souffert sur tous vos continents.
Je ne veux que la mer, je ne veux que le vent
Pour me bercer, comme un enfant, au creux des lames.
Hors du port qui n’est plus qu’une image effacée,
Les larmes du départ ne brûlent plus mes yeux.
Je ne me souviens pas de mes derniers adieux ...
Ô ma peine, ma peine, où vous ai-je laissée?

I have embarked

I have embarked on a ship that reels
And rolls and pitches and rocks.
My feet have forgotten the land and its ways;
The lithe waves have taught me other rhythms,
Lovelier than the tired ones of human song.
Ah! did I have the heart to live among you?
Brothers, on all your continents I’ve suffered.
I want only the sea, I want only the wind
To cradle me like a child in the trough of the waves.
Far from the port, now but a faded image,
Tears of parting no longer sting my eyes.
I can no longer recall my final farewells …
O my sorrow, my sorrow, where have I left you?
Translations by Richard Stokes, from A French Song Companion (Oxford, 2000)

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​"Gabriel Urbain Fauré (12 May 1845 – 4 November 1924) was a French composer, organist, pianist and teacher. He was one of the foremost French composers of his generation, and his musical style influenced many 20th-century composers. Among his best-known works are his Pavane, Requiem, nocturnes for piano and the songs "Après un rêve" and "Clair de lune". Although his best-known and most accessible compositions are generally his earlier ones, Fauré composed many of his most highly regarded works in his later years, in a more harmonically and melodically complex style." (Wikipedia)

For more information about the life and work of Gabriel Fauré please see the Wikipedia article here.

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ean de La Ville de Mirmont was a French poet who died at the age of 27 defending his country during World War I, at Verneuil.

Jean de La Ville de Mirmont was born into a Protestant Bordeaux family to Henri and Sophie Malan. He was one of six siblings. His father Henri was a professor of literature known for his translation of Cicero as well as an alderman for Bordeaux.

At the age of 22, Jean moved to Paris, where he renewed his childhood friendship with François Mauriac (the latter was to recall the former frequently, most notably in La Rencontre avec Barrès, 1945). Jean held a government post at the prefectory of the Seine where he was responsible for assisting the elderly. In 1914, he was called to the front with the rank of sergeant of the 57th Infantry Regiment. He died buried by a shell explosion on the 28 November of the same year, on Chemin des Dames.

His body was exhumed and reinterred by his family in 1920. It rests in the family tomb H.42 at the Protestant Cemetery of rue Judaïque at Bordeaux.

Taken from Wikipedia. To view the full Wikipedia article please click here.

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