DEL GRAN GOLFE DE
..................................MAR ...
NOW FROM THE SEA'S
....................GREAT GULF ...
Gaucelm Faidit trans. James H. Donalson
......................(from Provençal)
Del gran golfe de mar
e dels enois dels portz
e del perilhos far
soi, merce Dieu, estortz,
don posc dir e comdar
que mainta malananza
i hai suffert' e maint turmen;
e pos a Dieu platz q'eu torn m'en
en Lemozi ab cor jauzen,
don parti ab pesanza,
lo tornar e l'onranza
li grazisc, pos el m'o cossen.

Ben dei Dieu merceiar,
pos vol que sanz e fortz
puesc' el pais tornar
un val mais uns paucs ortz
qe d'autra terr' estar
rics ab gran benananza;
qar sol li bel acuilhimen
e'l onrat fag e·lh dig plazen
de nostra domna e·il prezen
'amorosa coindanza
e la douza semblanza
val tot qan autra terra ren.

Ar hai dreg de chantar,
pos vei joi e deportz,
solatz e domneiar,
qar zo es vostr' acortz;
e las fontz e·l riu clar
fan m'al cor alegranza,
prat e vergier, qar tot m'es gen,
q'era non dopti mar ni ven,
garbi, maistre ni ponen,
ni ma naus no·m balanza,
ni no·m fai mais doptanza
galea ni corsier corren.

Qi per Dieu gazainhar
pren d'aitals desconortz
ni per s'alma salvar
ben es dregz, non ges tortz;
mas cel qi per raubar
e per mal' acordanza
vai per mar, un hom tan mal pren,
em pauc d'ora s'aven soven
qe, qan cui'om puiar deissen,
si c'ab desesperanza
il laissa tot e 'slanza:
l'arm' e·l cors e l'aur e l'argen.
Now from the sea's great gulf,
annoyance of the ports,
and danger of the roads
I am, thank God, relieved,
so I can say and tell
that many a misfortune
I suffered there, and torment too,
and then God pleased that I return
to Limousin with joyous heart,
where I left all my troubles;
and my return, with honors
must please him, as he granted them.

So well may I thank God,
since, hale and hearty, I
could come back home again.
A little garden's worth
more than great riches, when
they're in another country;
for good reception's beautiful
and honest deeds and pleasant words
as from our lady, and the gift
of lovable behavior,
besides, her sweet appearance
is worth all other lands can give.

Now I've a right to sing
as I see joy and sport
and courtly ways about,
for this is your resolve;
and fountains and clear streams
can give my heart enjoyment:
I like the meadow, gardens too,
and now I don't fear sea or wind -
southwest, northwest, or from due west,
my ship no longer rocks me
and I'm afraid no longer
of runs of galley or corsair.

He who would win for God
may take discomfort on,
or if he'd save his soul
it's right and isn't wrong;
but he who wants to rob
and with an ill intention
goes overseas, a bad man grabs;
in little time, it happens that
when such a man has disembarked,
with sudden desperation
he'll leave all and abandon
soul, body, silver and his gold.

Trans. Copyright © James H. Donalson 2006


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