Songs

Colombine

by Régine Poldowski

If you would like to use our texts and translations, please click here for more information.

RECORDINGS

Listen to 'Colombine' here.

Text & Translation

View IPA

Colombine
French source: Paul Verlaine

Léandre le sot,
Pierrot qui d'un saut,
De puce
Franchit le buisson,
Cassandre sous son
Capuce,

Arlequin aussi,
Cet aigrefin si
Fantasque
Aux costumes fous,
Ses yeux luisants sous
Son masque,

- Do, mi, sol, mi, fa, -
Tout ce monde va,
Rit, chante
Et danse devant
Une belle enfant
Méchante

Dont les yeux pervers
Comme les yeux verts
Des chattes
Gardent ses appas
Et disent: "À bas
Les pattes!"

- Eux ils vont toujours! -
Fatidique cours
Des astres,
Oh! dis-moi vers quels
Mornes ou cruels
Désastres

L'implacable enfant,
Preste et relevant
Ses jupes,
La rose au chapeau,
Conduit son troupeau
De dupes?

Colombine
English translation © Richard Stokes

Foolish Leander,
Pierrot who with a flea-
Hop
Leaps the brushwood,
Pantaloon beneath
His cloak,

Harlequin too,
That swindler so
Bizarre
In his crazy clothes,
With eyes aglow behind
His mask,

- Do re mi fa sol, -
See all of then go,
Laugh, sing,
And dance before
A sweet and naughty
Child

Whose pernicious eyes,
Like the green eyes
Of cats,
Keep their charms
And say: ‘Keep your
Hands off!’

- On and on they go!
Like the fateful course
Of stars,
Oh! tell me, towards which
Dull or savage
Wreckage

Is the implacable child,
Nimbly lifting
Her skirts,
With a flower in her hat,
Leading her herd
Of fools?

Colombine
French source: Paul Verlaine

Colombine
English source: Richard Stokes

Léandre le sot,
Foolish Leander,
Pierrot qui d'un saut,
Pierrot who with a flea-
De puce
Hop
Franchit le buisson,
Leaps the brushwood,
Cassandre sous son
Pantaloon beneath
Capuce,
His cloak,

Arlequin aussi,
Harlequin too,
Cet aigrefin si
That swindler so
Fantasque
Bizarre
Aux costumes fous,
In his crazy clothes,
Ses yeux luisants sous
With eyes aglow behind
Son masque,
His mask,

- Do, mi, sol, mi, fa, -
- Do re mi fa sol, -
Tout ce monde va,
See all of then go,
Rit, chante
Laugh, sing,
Et danse devant
And dance before
Une belle enfant
A sweet and naughty
Méchante
Child

Dont les yeux pervers
Whose pernicious eyes,
Comme les yeux verts
Like the green eyes
Des chattes
Of cats,
Gardent ses appas
Keep their charms
Et disent: "À bas
And say: ‘Keep your
Les pattes!"
Hands off!’

- Eux ils vont toujours! -
- On and on they go!
Fatidique cours
Like the fateful course
Des astres,
Of stars,
Oh! dis-moi vers quels
Oh! tell me, towards which
Mornes ou cruels
Dull or savage
Désastres
Wreckage

L'implacable enfant,
Is the implacable child,
Preste et relevant
Nimbly lifting
Ses jupes,
Her skirts,
La rose au chapeau,
With a flower in her hat,
Conduit son troupeau
Leading her herd
De dupes?
Of fools?

Composer

Régine Poldowski

Poldowski was born Régine Wieniawski, daughter of the Polish violinist and composer Henryk Wieniawski. Her famous father died when she was ten months old. Poldowski moved among the musical aristocracy from an early age and performed her own music…

Poet

Paul Verlaine

Paul-Marie Verlaine was a French poet associated with the Symbolist movement. He is considered one of the greatest representatives of the fin de siècle in international and French poetry. Born in Metz, Verlaine was educated at the Lycée Impérial…

Performances

Upcoming Performances

Previously performed at:

Help us with a Donation

Enjoying our texts and translations? Help us continue to offer this service to all.

Make a Donation

Select Tickets