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François Villon

(c. 1431 – after 5 January 1463 / Paris)

Le Testament: Ballade: Pour Robert d'Estouteville


A t dawn of day, when falcon shakes his wing,
M ainly from pleasure, and from noble usage,
B lackbirds too shake theirs then as they sing,
R eceiving their mates, mingling their plumage,
O, as the desires it lights in me now rage,
I 'd offer you, joyously, what befits the lover.
S ee how Love has written this very page:
E ven for this end are we come together.

D oubtless, as my heart's lady you'll have being,
E ntirely now, till death consumes my age.
L aurel, so sweet, for my cause now fighting,
O live, so noble, removing all bitter foliage,
R eason does not wish me unused to owing,
E ven as I'm to agree with this wish, forever,
Duty to you, but rather grow used to serving:
Even for this end are we come together.

And, what's more, when sorrow's beating
Down on me, through Fate's incessant rage,
Your sweet glance its malice is assuaging,
Nor more or less than wind blows smoke away.
As, in your field, I plant I lose no grain,
For the harvest resembles me, and ever
God orders me to plough, and sow again:
Even for this end are we come together.

Princess, listen to this I now maintain:
That my heart and yours will not dissever:
So much I presume of you, and claim:
Even for this end are we come together.

Submitted: Thursday, March 29, 2012

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