30 April 2008

1st of May—from Romance of the Rose

...—than bycometh the ground so proude,
That it wole have a newe shroude,
And makith so quaynt his robe and faire,
That it had hewes an hundred payre
Of gras and flouris, ynde (blue) and pers (grey),
And many hewes ful dyvers:
That is the robe I mene, iwis (truly),
Through which the ground to preisen is.
The briddes, that haven lefte her song,
While thei han suffrid cold so strong
In weeres gryl and derk to sight,
Ben in May for the sonne bright
So glade, that they shewe in syngyng
That in her hertis is such lykyng ( pleasure),
That they mote syngen and be light.
Than doth the nyghtyngale hir myght
To make noyse and syngen blythe,
Than is blisful many sithe (times)
The chelaundre (goldfinch) and the papyngay
Than young folk entenden ay
For to ben gay and amorous;
The tyme is than so saverous.
Hard is his hart that loveth nought
In May, whan al this mirth is wrought;
Whan he may on these braunches here
The smale briddes syngen clere.

Romance of the Rose, Chaucer

No comments: