Nuit d’étoiles (Widor / Banville)

Starry night

Charles-Marie Widor (1844-1937)
Year of composition
Théodore de Banville (1823-1891)
Difficult (Grades 7+)
2 minutes
Classical music
Voice + keyboard
Instrumental parts

Original poem with a literal translation (AJ):

Refrain: Nuit d’étoiles, Sous tes voiles, Sous ta brise et tes parfums, Triste lyre Qui soupire, je rêve aux amours défunts.

1. La sereine mélancolie Vient éclore au fond de mon coeur, Et j’entends l’âme de ma mie Tressaillir dans le bois rêveur.

2. Dans les ombres de la feuillée, Quand tout bas je soupire seul, Tu reviens, pauvre âme éveillée, Toute blanche dans ton linceul.

3. Je revois à notre fontaine Tes regards bleus comme les cieux; Cette rose, c’est ton haleine, Et ces étoiles sont tes yeux.

Translation (AJ): Refrain: Starry night, Beneath your veils, Beneath your breeze and your perfumes, Sorrowful lyre That sighs, I ponder over a defunct love.

1. The serene melancholy Is birthing at the bottom of my heart, And I hear the soul of my darling Quivering in the dreamy wood.

2. In the shadows of the greenwood, When, discreetly, I am sighing alone, You come back, poor soul awaken’d, All white in your shroud.

3. I recall by our fountain Your gaze blue like the sky; This rose, it’s your breath, And these stars are your eyes.

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