BALLADE DES LANGUES ENNUYEUSESBALLADE: MACQUAIREíS RECIPE
François Villontr. Peter Dean
En rïagar, en alcenic rochier,
En orpiment, en salpestre et chaulx vive,
En plomb boullant pour mieulx les esmorcher,
En suye et poix destrempee de lessive
Faicte d'estrons et de pissat de Juisve,
En lavailles de jambes a meseaux,
En raclure de piez et vieulx houzeaux,
En sang d'aspic et drocques venimeuses,
En fïel de loups, de regnars et blereaux,
Soient frictes ces langues ennuyeuses!

En servelle de chat qui hait peschier,
Noir et si viel qu'il n'ait dent en gencyve,
D'un viel matin, qui vault bien aussi chier,
Tout enragié, en sa bave et sallive,
En l'escume d'une mulle poussive,
Detrenchée menue a bons cyseaulx,
En eaue ou ratz plungent groins et museaux,
Regnes, crappaulx et bestes dangereuses,
Serpens, laissars et telz nobles oiseaux,
Soient frictes ces langues ennuyeuses!

En sublimé, dangereux a toucher
Et ou nombril d'une couleuvre vive,
En sang c'on voit es poillectes sechier
Sur ces babriers, quant plaine lune arrive,
Dont l'un est noir, l'autre plus vert que cyve,
En chancre et fix et en ces ors cuveaulx
Ou nourrisses essangent leurs drappeaux,
En petits baings de fïlles amoureuses
- Qui ne m'entant n'ay suivy les bordeaux -
Soient frictes ces langues ennuyeuses!

Prince, passez tous ces frians morceaux,
S'estamine, sacz n'avez ne bluteaux,
Parmy le fons d'unes brayes breneuses,
Mais paravant en estronc de pourceaux
Soient frictes ces langues ennuyeuses!
In arsenic thatís sulphurous and hot;
in orpiment, in saltpetre and quicklime;
in boiling lead which kills them on the spot
and, taken from a leperís limbs, the slime;
in soot and pitch thatís been soaked for some time
and mingled with the piss and shit of Jews;
in scrapings from feet and from inside old shoes;
in viperís blood and drugs from venom reaped;
in gall that wolves, foxes and badgers lose -
may all these envious tongues be fried and steeped.

In brain of cat which hunts for fish no more,
black, and so old heís no tooth in his gums;
in spit and slavver of a mastiff hoar,
for what itís worth, when maddened, up it comes;
in foam from a broken-winded mule which thumbs
have hacked with good sharp blades about;
and water where rats have plunged arse over snout,
frogs, too, and toads and poisonous beasts all heaped,
lizards and snakes and such fine kinds of trout -
may all these envious tongues be fried and steeped.

In sublimate dangerous to touch which passes
into the belly of a living snake;
in dry blood like that which one sees in masses
in barbersí dishes, when the moonís full, which take
one a black hue, the other green as a lake;
in cancers and growths and in those steaming vats
in which wet-nurses soak their this-and-thats;
in tiny baths where local whores have dipped
(if youíre now lost, youíve never used the twats) -
may all these envious tongues be fried and steeped.

Prince, if youíve neither colander nor sieve,
pass all these dainty morsels - none forgive -
amongst much muck and fetid trusses heaped,
but stir in pigshit first: and, thus captive,
may all these envious tongues be fried and steeped.

Trans. Copyright © Peter Dean 2002


VB17 next
VB17 index
French index
French next
translator's next