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Once upon a time there was a kiss ...
Once upon a time, in renaissance-time, there was a French man who desired a beautiful lady. The lady let him kiss her but didn't allow him to go further. What could our poor man do now to court her? Of course he wrote a poem! With this "Bayser", which means "kiss", he told his lady in voluptuous rhymes how hard he wanted her, like all men do at all times. He assured her that she could trust him and that he would do her well.
Did he convince her? Did they fly together to the stars? We don't know. But there is music in this desire, like there is music in all desires, and I began to sing it. I sang for the old French poet, Joachim du Bellay, who's been dead for a long time. I sang for myself. And I sang for all lovers, wishing they would be lucky enough to follow their feelings. Then I had the great luck to make a man listen and understand in a way that this man felt like adding some more beautiful notes and sounds. He took his guitar and played like a modern cavalier and was even kind enough and able to improve the sound despite the raw material I recorded totally unprofessionally without any adequate equipment. This, too, seems to be a fairy tale. Please enjoy! — Katharina
Joachim Du Bellay (16th century)
Quand ton col de couleur de rose
Se donne à mon embrassement
Et ton oeil languit doucement
D'une paupière à demi close,
Mon âme se fond du désir
Dont elle est ardemment pleine
Et ne peut souffrir à grand'peine
La force d'un si grand plaisir.
Puis, quand s'approche de la tienne
Ma lèvre, et que si près je suis
Que la fleur recueillir je puis
De ton haleine ambroisienne,
Quand le soupir de ces odeurs
Où nos deux langues qui se jouent
Moitement folâtrent et nouent,
Eventent mes douces ardeurs,
Il me semble être assis à table
Avec les dieux, tant je suis heureux,
Et boire à longs traits savoureux
Leur doux breuvage délectable.
Si le bien qui au plus grand bien
Est plus prochain, prendre ou me laisse,
Pourquoi me permets-tu, maîtresse,
Qu'encore le plus grand soit mien?
As-tu peur que la jouissance
D'un si grand heur me fasse dieu?
Et que sans toi je vole au lieu
Belle, n'aie peur de cela,
Partout où sera ta demeure,
Mon ciel, jusqu'à tant que je meure,
Et mon paradis sera là.
(I'll try to translate not word by word,
but feeling by feeling. – K.K.)
When your neck is inclining
– slowly – to be caressed
and your look is languishing, for more ...
the eyelids half closed
My soul is getting mellow, and
desire hits me fervently
: I want you! and can't stand, neither understand
this pleasure's pain, this hard pain's pleasure
And when I'm bringing down my lips
to yours, and am so near
that I could pick up easily
the flower of your sweet breath, dear
Ah!, when the sighs and all these scents
where our tongues begin to join
playing, connecting, answering ...
You make ..., I mean: You make me crazy
I feel like becoming a bird
beginning to take off
as if there's healing shadow for all sunny sorrows
above, so glad am I
that happiness is almost perfect now.
But why, my dear, don't you allow
to go on, just a tiny little more ...
a little further ... make it real?
Are you afraid then that the coming joy
would be too much for me, would change
me, pity man, into a god
flying up to neverending bliss without you?
Oh beauty, mine! please don't you fear this, please!
The only sky I know is where you are
and everywhere you are
until I die I'll be with you
and paradise will come