This week’s prompt took me back a few decades, back to the days when American francophiles were fascinated by the work – the poetry and the films – of Jacques Prevert.
Students of the golden age of French cinema are familiar with his classic motion pictures, “Les Enfants du paradis” – which many claim was the greatest French film ever made – as well as “Le Jour se leve,” “Quai des brumes,” and a number of others, all written by Prevert.
But what brought his work to the minds of some of us old-timers by today’s Magpie prompt was of course his song “Les Feuilles mortes” – “Autumn Leaves” – especially as sung by Edith Piaf and Yves Montand. There were, of course, English versions, but I’ll stick with the original.
Prevert’s poetry holds up well today and is perfect for an October morn.
“C’est une chanson qui nous ressemble,
Toi, tu m’aimais et je t’aimais.”
It’s a song that resembles the two of us,
You, you who loved me and I who loved you.
“Et nous vivions tous deux ensemble,
Toi qui m’aimais, moi qui t’aimais.”
And the two of us lived together,
You who loved me and I who loved you.
“Mais la vie separe ceux qui s’aiment,
Tout doucement, sans faire de bruit.
Et la mer efface sur le sable
Les pas des amants desunis.”
But life separates those who love,
Softly, making no noise.
And the sea erases on the sand
The footprints of lovers who are no longer together.
Jacques Prevert, 1900-1977
1 year ago