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Songs

Hyde Park

by Francis Poulenc

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Text & Translation

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Hyde Park
French source: Guillaume Apollinaire

Les Faiseurs de religion
Prêchaient dans le brouillard
Les ombres près de qui nous passions
Jouaient à collin maillard

À soixante-dix ans
Joues fraîches de petits enfants
Venez venez Eléonore
Et que sais-je encore

Regardez venir les cyclopes
Les pipes s'envolaient
Mais envolez-vous-en
Regards impénitents
Et l'Europe l'Europe

Regards sacrés
Mains enamourées
Et les amants s'aimèrent
Tant que prêcheurs prêchèrent

Hyde Park
English translation © Richard Stokes

The religion-mongers
Were preaching in the fog
The shadows that we passed by
Were playing blind man’s buff

Seventy years old
Cheeks as fresh as a baby’s
Come along Eleonore come along
And what more besides

Look at the Cyclops looming up
Their pipes flying by
But be off
Stubborn gazes
And Europe Europe

Worshipping gazes
Hands in love
And the lovers made love
As long as the preachers preached

Translation © Richard Stokes, author of A French Song Companion (Oxford, 2000)

Hyde Park
French source: Guillaume Apollinaire

Hyde Park
English source: Richard Stokes

Les Faiseurs de religion
The religion-mongers
Prêchaient dans le brouillard
Were preaching in the fog
Les ombres près de qui nous passions
The shadows that we passed by
Jouaient à collin maillard
Were playing blind man’s buff

À soixante-dix ans
Seventy years old
Joues fraîches de petits enfants
Cheeks as fresh as a baby’s
Venez venez Eléonore
Come along Eleonore come along
Et que sais-je encore
And what more besides

Regardez venir les cyclopes
Look at the Cyclops looming up
Les pipes s'envolaient
Their pipes flying by
Mais envolez-vous-en
But be off
Regards impénitents
Stubborn gazes
Et l'Europe l'Europe
And Europe Europe

Regards sacrés
Worshipping gazes
Mains enamourées
Hands in love
Et les amants s'aimèrent
And the lovers made love
Tant que prêcheurs prêchèrent
As long as the preachers preached

Composer

Francis Poulenc

Francis Jean Marcel Poulenc (F7 January 1899 – 30 January 1963) was a French composer and pianist. His compositions include mélodies, solo piano works, chamber music, choral pieces, operas, ballets, and orchestral concert music. Read the full…

Poet

Guillaume Apollinaire

Guillaume Apollinaire  (26 August 1880 – 9 November 1918) was a French poet, playwright, short story writer, novelist, and art critic of Polish-Belarusian descent. Apollinaire is considered one of the foremost poets of the early 20th century, as…

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