Je ne songeais pas à Rose (D’Erlanger / Victor Hugo))

Vieille chanson du jeune temps

By: Music by Frédéric D’Erlanger (1868-1943)
For: Voice + keyboard
page one of Je ne songeais pas à Rose (D’Erlanger / Victor Hugo))

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Composer
Music by Frédéric D’Erlanger (1868-1943)
Year of composition
1895
Lyricist
Victor Hugo (1802-1885)
Publisher
Difficulty
Moderate (Grades 4-6)
Duration
2 minutes
Genre
Classical music
License details
For anything not permitted by the above licence then you should contact the publisher first to obtain permission.

This delightful poem by Victor Hugo, dated 1855, has also been set in music by Léo Delibes, Emile Pessard, Charles-Marie Widor and Alain Jacques among others. The original poem had 9 stanzas, each of 4 verses, and D’Erlanger kept only the 1st, 6th, 7th, 8th and 9th. The complete version was retained by Emile Pessard, Charles-Marie Widor and Alain Jacques (cf scores on ScoreExchange). Translation (AJ):

I was not thinking about Rose, Rose, to the woods, came with me; We were talking about something, But I don’t remember what.

A stream was running fresh and hollow On the velvety mosses, And nature in love Was sleeping in the big muffled woods.

Rose undid her shoe And put, with a naive gesture, Her little foot in the clear water. I did not see her naked foot!

I did not know what to say to her, I was following her in the wood, Seeing her sometimes smiling And sometimes sighing.

I only saw that she was beautiful When we left the muffled woods. "OK, let’s stop thinking about it" she said. Since, I keep thinking about it, always!

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