Raimbaut de Vaqueiras
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280 Provençal R aimbaut de Vaqueir as (ca. 1155–1205) “Guard us well, my sentry,” Alba Guard us well, my sentry, Cold the pike and heavy While your radiant mistress, she Most superb, most lovely, I have to lie thus close to me ’til dawn. Command the night stand to, Bid or forbid as I will, day Puts out my joy l’albe, oc l’albe. ’Til the auzel wakens, Watchman guard this richness; ’Til the morningstar rises Eastward, I am wantless. Enemy am I of that gravesman, dawn: But a long day forces All candor from our eyes, Wholly destroys us l’albe, oc l’albe. Cry the hour from the keep, friend; Keep us here below you from Your ill-favoured master, warm, Snug, snoring, cozened, Christ! Flat on his back, symmetrical, ’til dawn. Be warder on his treasure That I may count her over And only fear l’albe, oc l’albe. Raimbaut de Vaqueiras 281  Love, adieu, adieu! Longer I could not stay Beyond our kinsman night, who flies Before the sun’s uprising. How soggy red these fields lie in the dawn. And changing his routine watch, unbuckling Massive keys, my sentry Cries from the tower —l’albe, oc l’albe!— Paul Blackburn, 1952 “High waves that shift and gather from the sea” Planh High waves that shift and gather from the sea With any wind or fancy, from my lady What do you, syllable or sighing, carry, Or casual song, who comes not back to me? And ah, Deus d’Amor, Grant in its hour joy as grief in its hour. Such sweetness folds him who returns from where My lady holds her sojourn and glad slumber As seems reprieve and liquid offered where These lips wait parted, agèd with desire; And ah, Deus d’Amor, Grant in its hour joy as grief in its hour. Poor is the love one sends from alien fires When all his hopes must make content with tears. Now from her dreams the shape of me retires As promises forgetfulness requires. 282 Provençal Ah, Deus d’Amor, Grant in its hour joy as grief in its hour. W. S. Merwin, 1950 ...