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278 Provençal Gir aut de Bornelh (Twelfth Century) “Glorious Lord, fountain of clarity,” Alba Glorious Lord, fountain of clarity, God of all power, if it please Thee, Be by my friend unslumbering vigil Whom I no longer see, for the night fell, Until arrives the dawn. Friend, whether dreaming or half-roused you stay, Slumber no longer, but renew the eye Where in the east I see the light rise That salutes day, and the star recognize That trembles upon dawn. Friend, I smooth the entreaty into song: Slumber no more, for I hear the bird sing That goes inquiring day among the trees, And tremble lest one jealously surprise You as now the dawn. Friend, but approach and by the window stay And see the stars diminish from the sky; Judge if the word is amiable I send you That you neglect, and yours will be the sorrow When the time fades to dawn. Friend, friend, since you departed me, I have not slept nor straightened from the knee Petitioning the holy Virgin’s son That he to me render my companion, And soon arrives the dawn. Friend, on these garden and indifferent stones Giraut de Bornelh 279  I prayed that no sleep touch my orisons Till all dark vanishing rewarded day, But comes no answer when I sing or pray, And early comes the dawn. W. S. Merwin, 1950 ...


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