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Nuit d'Espagne (1872)

Nuit d'Espagne

L’air est embaumé, la nuit est sereine
Et mon âme est pleine de pensers joyeux;
Ô bien-aimée, viens! Ô bien-aimée,
Voici l’instant de l’amour!
Dans le bois profond où les fleurs s’endorment,
Où chantent des sources,
Vite, enfuyons-nous, enfuyons-nous!
Vois, la lune est claire et nous sourit dans le ciel.
Les yeux indiscrets ne sont plus à craindre,
Viens, ô bien-aimée, la nuit protège ton front rougissant!
La nuit est sereine, apaise mon cœur;
C’est l’heure d’amour! C’est l’heure!
Dans le sombre azur les blondes étoiles
Écartent leurs voiles pour te voir passer,
Ô bien-aimée, viens! Ô bien-aimée,
Voici l’instant de l’amour!
J’ai vu s’entr’ouvrir ton rideau de gaze,
Tu m’entends cruelle,
Et tu ne viens pas, tu ne viens pas!
Vois, la route est sombre sous les rameaux enlaces!
Cueille en leur splendeur tes jeunes années,
Viens! Car l’heure est brève,
Un jour effeuille les fleurs du printemps!
La nuit est sereine, apaise mon cœur!

Spanish Night

The air is perfumed, the night serene
And my soul is filled with joyful thoughts;
O my beloved, come! my beloved,
Now is the moment of love!
Into the deep woods, where flowers slumber
And where the streams sing,
Quickly, let us flee, let us flee!
Look, the bright moon smiles at us from the sky.
Prying eyes need no longer be feared,
Come, my beloved, night conceals your blushing brow!
The night is serene, soothe my heart!
It is the hour of love! The hour!
In the dark blue sky the pale stars
Draw aside their veils to see you pass,
O my beloved, come! my beloved,
Now is the moment of love!
I saw your muslin curtains move,
You can hear me, cruel one,
And you do not come, do not come!
Look, the path is dark beneath entwined branches!
Gather your youthful years in their splendour,
Come, for time is short!
A single day scatters the flowers of spring!
The night is serene, soothe my heart!
Translation © Richard Stokes, author of A French Song Companion (Oxford, 2000)

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Composer

Jules Massenet was a French composer of the Romantic era best known for his operas, of which he wrote more than thirty. The two most frequently staged are Manon and Werther.


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