Margaret Winefride Simpson

THE HINMAIST LEAF (Théophile Gautier)

Nae bough within the forest deep,
Whaur a' is blauded noo an bare,
Mair than ae antrin leaf dis keep,
Than ae leaf an ae bird nae mair:
Nocht to my saul dis noo belang
Save ae lane luve to sing therein,
But there's nae herkenin to its sang
For wailin o the autumn win':
Doon fa's the leaf, the bird taks wing,
Luve dwines, for Winter's ill to dree;
Wee bird, abuin my grave come sing
When green ance mair sall be the tree!

THE FAIRY-FOWK (Leconte de Lisle)

Their broos wi thyme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.
Frae the dim wudland track the deer kens weel
On a black horse comes oot a swippert chiel;
A' in the mirk his spur shines gowden-bricht,
An, when he rides anent the white muin's licht,
Glimmerin abuin his flowin locks is seen
A glintin helmet wi a siller sheen.
Their broos wi thyme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.
Fast gaitherin, they thrang aroon' him there,
Seemin to hover in the seelent air;
-"Whither awa sae late, bauld chevalier,
This calm, still nicht?" the youthfu Queen dis speir;
"Ill speerits haunts the forests mirk an braid;
Come, dance upon this bonnie green insteed!"
Their broos wi thyme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.
-"Na! Bricht-ee'd waits for me my bonnie mey,
An swift the morrow brings oor bridal-day;
Sae, fairy-fowk that rings this flouery gress,
Mak wey, an lat me e'en win free to pass;
Hinner nor haud me distant frae my dear,
For, see! Wan glimmerin's o the dawn appear!"
Their broos wi thyme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.
-"Bide ye, braw callant! Gowden ring I'll gie
An magic opal baith for gift to thee,
An, that than wealth or fame worth hantle mair,
My goon that's woven o the muinbeams fair!"
--"Na!" says he.--"Then begane!"--Her finger white
Touches the bosom o the tremblin knicht.
Their broos wi thyme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.
An 'neth the spur awa boonds the black steed;
It rins, it lowps, an never slackens speed;
But the knicht, cooerin an shudderin wi fear,
Sees on his peth a white form drawin near
Wi noiseless fit an airms that ootstreetched are:
-"Fay, phantom, fiend, seekna my road to bar!"
Their broos wi thyme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.
-"Barna my road, O grim an laithsome gaist!
To wed my bonnie, bricht-ee'd mey I haste!"
--"Alack! The grave for evermair sall be
Oor bridal-bed, my ain dear luve!" says she,
"For I am deid!" - An syne her lover leal,
Seein her sae, wi duil fa's deid as weel.
Their broos wi theme an marjoram bedicht,
Dance on yon hauch the fairy-fowk fou licht.

INVOCATION (Charles Baudelaire)

To her, maist dear an fairest fair,
That aye my hert's delyte sall be,
That I adore for evermair,
Greetin evermair I gie!
Fresh as the ocean's braith there flows
Throu a' my life her speerit's rowth,
An on my saul she still bestows
Desire for everlestin truith.
Fragrance that's ever fresh to seek
In dwallin dear an far frae sicht!
Forgotten censer whilk dis reek
Wi secret sweetness throu the nicht!
O deathless Luve, what wirds is gien
Thy wonder truly to relate-
Thoo grain o musk that lies, unseen,
Deep hid in my eternal fate?
To her, maist dear an fairest fair,
The source o life an joy to me,
That I adore for evermair,
Greetin evermair I gie!

TO ADOLPHE GAÏFFE (Théodore de Banville)

O carefree callant, young an gay,
Fair as the sun o Italy,
Your licht hert keep as lang's ye mey!
A' wisdom lies in this alane--
Sweet Spring-time, wine, an beauty fain
To loe. Eneuch! The lave is vain!
Smile, e'en tho Fate be ill to bear!
An when the primrose blaws ance mair
Drap in your gless its blossoms fair!
Aneth the muils--ye weel mey speir--
What's left for the puir body's cheer
But to hae kent Luve's Mey-time here?
"Effect an cause consider noo!"
Yon dreamers says wi sullen broo...
Wirds! Wirds! The rose's flouer lat's pou!

EEN (Sully Prudhomme)

A' loed, a' fair, black een or blue,
O dawn's delyte they've taen their fill;
Deep in the grave they slumber noo
While the same sun is risin still.
Nicht, sweeter than the Day mibbie,
On coontless een her spell haes set;
Fou thame o mirkest gloom, but see
Hoo a' the stars are skinklin yet!
O, gin they've aiblins tint their sicht!-
Nay, that can never be! Thae een
Are turned towards some airt whaur bricht
Is seen the warl' we ca' unseen.
As stars dwalls in the lift tho they
Whiles aye maun set an leave us laith,
The ee's licht maun its settin hae
But ne'er is truly dimmed bi daith.
A' loed, a' fair, black een or blue,
Takkin o some great dawn their fill,
Ayont the deep grave's darkness noo
The een we close are seein still.

LANGIN (Sully Prudhomme)

Never to speak her name again,
Never to see or hear her noo,
But aye to wait her, leal an fain,
An aye to loe!
Weary to wait, airms openin fain,
But aye, tho teem they close anew,
To rax them oot to her alane,
An aye to loe!
To rax them oot to her in vain,
An pine awa in tears an rue,
But thus wi tears aye to mak mane,
An aye to loe!
Never to speak her name again,
Never to see or hear her noo,
But aye wi luve mair fond an fain
Aye, aye, to loe!

SERENADE (François Coppée)

O see, my dawtie, April's here,
The nestin birds is a' asteer,
The exiled sun returns at last;
Clear is the air an bricht the lift,
An white as snaw the feathery drift
Whaur flutterin dous is flockin past!
Yon ower-beguilin mirror leave
Whaur eenoo ye braid an weave
The gowden glamour o your hair!
Ribbons an sic-like lay awa
For thorn an brier will blaud them a',
Raivelin or lang your tresses fair!
Whaur butterflees is hoverin licht,
An dragonflees gangs glintin bricht,
O, tak the gate for trystin noo!
Come, for whaur the wild fawns drinks,
Whaur green wids shades the lochan's brink,
O, weel ye ken wha waits for you!

FIRST LOVE (François Coppée)

It's nae that she was unco fair,
But on that morn, I weel reca',
The braith o Spring was in the air,
An twenty were we baith the twa.
It's nae that she was unco quait,
But save the luvin tale I tauld
I wooed the lass nae couthier gate,
Nor daured, I vow, to prove mair bauld.
It's nae that kin'ly was her hert,
But sic my bliss her voice to hear
That while we spak I kent the smert
As to my ee aye cam the teir.
It's nae that cruel was her saul,
Yet she forhooed me, an Despair
Dwalls in me noo withoot devaul,
An I gang dowie evermair!

AUTUMN SANG (Paul Verlaine)

Wi sabbin soon'
Her viols croon
Sad Autumn's sang
An pierce my hert
Wi lingerin smert
O sorrow's pang.
Braithless an pale
As I bewail
This oor's despair
I murn to min'
On days langsyne
That are nae mair;
An aye wi yon
Ill win' whauron
I'm tossed forlorn
Fen'less I fare
As here an there
A deid leaf's borne.


Throu fields that lane an wintry lie
There gaed, eenoo, twa passin by:
Daith dwallin in their een, they gaed,
An scarce wis heard the wirds they said:
In fields that lane an wintry lie
Twa gaists reca'd the days gane by:
-O, min' ye on oor joy langsyne?
-Noo whaurfore wad ye hae me min'?
-What dreams is yours o me alane?
An at my name what hertbeats?--Nane!
-O, braw the blissfu days we've seen
When fain we kissed! - It mey hae been!
-Hie hopes we kent, blue lifts ootspreid!
-Hope, vanquished, towards the mirk lift fled!
'mang memories wannerin thus they gaed,
An Nicht alane heard a' they said.


Tears wall my hert within
Like the rain ower the toon!
What wae is this to win
Thus hine my hert within?
O soon' as sweet's a sang
O rain on ruif an road!
O, when a hert thinks lang
Rain sings an unco sang!
Rizzon for tears is nane
In this forfochen hert!
Nae fauseness to bemane?
Rizzon for duil is nane!
Warst wae is this to dree--
To ken o rizzon nane
That wae my hert sud be
Wi luve nor hate to dree!


Birk-tree an siller aspen sichs...
Muin-shaidaes on the watter lies...
Like tresses steered bi evenin breezes licht
The sweetness wafted bi the simmer nicht
Attour the great loch glimmerin glessy-bricht.
Aye dips the oar, an lifts, an dips;
My boat within a dream's hert slips:
My boat within heeven's hert dis glide
Upon the loch's mysterious tide...
Silence is ane o my oars twa,
Languor the ither ane I ca':
Wi closed een rowe, in rhythm rowe,
My hert! As in a dwaum lat a'
Thy indolence rowe sweir an slaw!
The listenin muin leans on yon hill doon-bye
As seelently the boat glides on its wey...
Upon my cloak three new-blawn lilies dees:
Is it their saul towards thae lips o thine
That rises, wan, voluptuous Nicht, or mine?
Yon whisperin reeds Nicht's tresses steers near by...
Freely as oar on wave dis lie,
Or muinlicht on the watters, I
My speerit spends in sab an sich!


Fair smiled the sun 'tweesh brainch an bough
Whaur blossoms white an rosy growes;
Her lane hine ben
Yon bonnie den
A birdie wi a dowie air
Sang o her sorrow, lang an sair,
That aye sae teem
The den sud seem:
But a' at ance there comes her wey
Anither bird that, flitterin by
On restless wing,
Begins to sing,
Straucht sattlin on that fair green bough
Whaur blossoms white an rosy growes:
Syne, naething laith,
But canty baith,
The twasome on their leafy spray
Fou couthie to ilk ither say:
"Wi moss an twig
A nest lat's bigg!"...
I'll warran' a blessin God will gie
To yon twa birdies in the tree!