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Songs

Le Retour (1912)

Le Retour

Ulysse part la voile au vent,
Vers Ithaque aux ondes chéries,
Avec des bercements la vague roule et plie.
Au large de son coeur la mer aux vastes eaux
Où son oeil suit les blancs oiseaux
Egrène au loin des pierreries.
Ulysse part la voile au vent,
Vers Ithaque aux ondes chéries!
Penché oeil grave et coeur battant
Sur le bec d'or de sa galère
Il se rit, quand le flot est noir, de sa colère
Car là-bas son cher fils pieux et fier attend
Après les combats éclatants,
La victoire aux bras de son père.
Il songe, oeil grave et coeur battant
Sur le bec d'or de sa galère.
Ulysse part la voile au vent,
Vers Ithaque aux ondes chéries.

The Return

Ulysses sets out, sails to the wind,
Towards Ithaca on beloved waves,
Which rise and fall and sway.
Before the open sea of his heart, the vast ocean,
Where his eyes follow the white birds,
Scatters in the distance precious jewels.
Ulysses sets out, sails to the wind,
Towards Ithaca on beloved waves.
Leaning, with serious gaze and beating heart,
On the golden prow of his boat,
He laughs at his anger, when black waves threaten,
For yonder his dear, devout and proud son awaits,
After astounding victories, his triumphant father.
He dreams, with serious gaze and beating heart,
By the golden prow of his boat.
Ulysses sets out, sails to the wind,
Towards Ithaca on beloved waves.
Translation © Richard Stokes, author of A French Song Companion (Oxford, 2000)

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Composer

Marie-Juliette Olga Boulanger was a French composer, and the first female winner of the Prix de Rome composition prize. Her older sister was the noted composer and composition teacher Nadia Boulanger.


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Poet

Georges Delaquys  was a French poet and playwright.


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