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Départ (1869)


Je veux oublier que j'aime,
Emportez-moi loin, amis,
Emportez-moi loin d'ici,
En Flandre, en Espagne, à Naple, en Bohême,
Si loin qu'en chemin reste mon souci!
Que restera-t'il en moi, en de moi-même,
Quand à m'en guérir j'aurai réussi?
N'importe, je veux fermer ma blessure
Les longues douleurs ne sont pas mon lot!
Allons, je veux fermer ma blessure,
Partons! Allons par pays courir l'aventure,
Pour nous secourer partons au galop!
Sans te dire adieu chère créature!
Car mon coeur fondrait en sanglot!
Nous reposerons, la course assouvie,
Dans le serpolet, le baume et le thym!
Mais si d'en cueillir il me prend envie
Détournez mes doigts d'un fatal butin,
Car ce fut ainsi qu'elle prit ma vie,
Sans en rien savoir par un frais matin!
J'étais à genoux parmi la bruyère.
Partons, mes amis, partons! je soif de courir.
Que mon cheval jette un vent sa crinière,
Voyons l'horizon devant nous s'ouvrir.
Ah, partez sans moi! l'âme prisonnière
Aime sa prison - et veut y mourir!


I wish to forget that I love,
Bear me far away, my friends,
Bear me far from here,
To Flanders, Spain, Naples, Bohemia,
So far that I lose my worries en route!
What shall remain in me, in my soul,
Once my cure is complete?
Whatever – I wish to close my wound,
Long-lasting grief is not my lot!
Come, I wish to close my wound,
Let us depart! Let us seek adventure in the country,
Let us seek solace at a gallop!
Without taking leave of you, dear creature!
For my heart would dissolve in sobs!
We shall rest, once the journey’s over,
In wild thyme, balsam and thyme!
But if I decide to pick any,
Turn my fingers away from such fateful booty,
For it was thus that she took my life,
One fresh morning, without being aware!
I was kneeling in the heather.
Let us depart, my friends! I am eager to fly.
Let my horse shake his mane to the wind,
Let us see the horizon opening up before us.
Ah, leave without me! The imprisoned soul
Love his prison – and wishes to die there!
Translation © Richard Stokes, author of A French Song Companion (Oxford, 2000)

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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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Guillaume Victor Émile Augier was a French dramatist. 

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