de LAÜSTICfrom LAÜSTIC
Marie de Francetr. Judith P. Shoaf
une aventure vus dirai,
dunt li Bretun firent un lai;
laüstic ad nun, ceo m'est vis,
si l'apelent en lur païs;
ceo est russignol en franceis
e nihtegale en dreit engleis.

en Seint Mallo en la cuntree
ot une vile renumee.
Deus chevalers ilec manëent
e deus forz maisuns (i) aveient.
pur la bunté des deus baruns
fu de la vile bons li nuns.
li uns aveit femme espusee,
sage, curteise e acemee;
a merveille se teneit chiere
sulunc l'usage e la manere.
li autres fu un bachelers
bien coneü entre ses pers
de prüesce, de grant valur,
e volenters feseit honur:
mut turnëot e despendeit
e bien donot ceo qu'il aveit.
la femme sun veisin ama;
tant la requist, tant la preia
e tant par ot en lui grant bien
que ele l'ama sur tute rien,
tant pur le bien quë ele oï,
tant pur ceo qu'il iert pres de li.
sagement e bien s'entr'amerent;
mut se covrirent e garderent
qu'il ne feussent aparceüz.
ne desturbez ne mescreüz.
e eus le poeient bien fere,
kar pres esteient lur repere,
preceines furent lur maisuns
e lur sales e lur dunguns;
n'i aveit bare ne devise
fors un haut mur de piere bise.
des chambres u la dame jut,
quant a la fenestre s'estut,
poeit parler a sun ami
de l'autre part, e il a li,
e lur aveirs entrechangier
e par geter e par lancier.
n'unt gueres rien que lur despleise,
mut esteient amdui a eise,
fors tant k'il ne poënt venir
del tut ensemble a lur pleisir;

............
............
The adventure in my next tale
The Bretons made into a lai
Called "Laustic," I've heard them say,
In Brittany; in French they call
The "laustic" a "rossignol"
And in good English, "nightingale."





Near St. Malo there was a town
(Somewhere thereabouts) of great renown.
Two knights lived there, no lowly vassals,
In houses that were built like castles.
These barons were so good, their fame
Gave their village goodness's own name.
One of them had married lately:
Polite and polished, such a lady!
She was wise to her own worth
(- Normal in ladies of high birth).
The other lord was a bachelor,
Famed for prowess and for valor,
Loved by all, for he knew how to live:
Joust a lot, spend a lot, what you have give
Away freely. He loved the wife of his neighbor.
He begged so much, and prayed yet more
- And goodness was his striking feature -
So she loved him more than any creature,
Because of the deeds he was famous for,
And because he lived in the castle next door.
Wisely and well they loved, these lovers,
They guarded their love under various covers
And hid it from general sight,
And the lady, at her window, higher,
Speaks, and looks, only desire.
Nights, when the moon her pale light shed,
When her husband had gone to bed,
The lady rose up from his side,
Wrapped herself in a mantle wide,
Went to stand at the window, true
To her friend waiting there, she knew;
For both their lives were just the same,
They waked all night till morning came.
The rapture of looking made them so glad
(That rapture the only one they had).




............
............

TO READ THE REST go to http://web.english.ufl.edu/exemplaria/marie/laustic.pdf


Trans. Copyright © Judith P. Shoaf 1991


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