The Joyous Wanderer
Translated from M. Catulle Mendès
I go by road, I go by street—
      Lira, la, la!
O white highways, ye know my feet!
A loaf I carry and, all told,
Three broad bits of lucky gold—
      Lira, la, la!
And O within my flowering heart,
(Sing, dear nightingale!) is my Sweet.
A poor man met me and begged for bread—
      Lira, la, la!
“Brother, take all the loaf,” I said,
I shall but go with lighter cheer—
      Lira, la, la!
And O within my flowering heart
(Sing, sweet nightingale!) is my Dear.
A thief I met on the lonely way—
      Lira, la, la!
He took my gold; I cried to him, “Stay!
And take my pocket and make an end.”
      Lira, la la!
And O within my flowering heart
(Sing, soft nightingale!) is my Friend.
Now on the plain I have met with death—
      Lira, la, la!
My bread is gone, my gold, my breath.
But O this heart is not afraid—
      Lira, la, la!
For O within this lonely heart
(Sing, sad nightingale!) is my Maid.

Webpage © 2001 ELC
Lane Core Jr. (
Created April 8, 2001; not revised.