Hélène

Original Text: 

Flowers of France: The Renaissance Period, from Ronsard to Saint-Amant, Representative Poems of the Sixteenth Century, trans. John Payne (London: Villon Society, 1907): 25-26.

1When you're grown old and sit before the fire at night,
2Devising, as you spin by candle-shine, you'll sing
3The rhymes I made of old and "Ronsard", marvelling.
4You'll say, "my praises sang, when I was sweet of sight."
5No maid of yours, that hears such tidings, but forthright,
6Though half with labour drowsed and wearied, at the ring
7Shall waken of my name and join in hallowing
8Your name, by that my praise with deathless glory dight.
9I shall be underground; my ghost, no more opprest
10By flesh and blood, among the myrtled shades will rest
11And you before the hearth will be a bowed old wife,
12Regretful for my love and your disdainful pride.
13Live, then, believe me, live; nor till to-morrow bide;
14But gather in to-day the roses of this life.
RPO poem Editors: 
Ian Lancashire
Data entry: Sharine Leung
RPO Edition: 
2012