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Zephyrus blows and good weather is here to stay

Zephyrus blows and good weather is here to stay.
Love promises joy to the beasts in the field,
The countryside fills with beautiful flowers,
Every heart readies itself for love's sweet arrows,
Procne, her former sorrows forgotten,
Unfurls her wings and flies towards the horizon.
Every man lives happily but I lament,
For love has built me a hostel of torment.

Zephyrus blows and the trees with leaves
Adorn their dense and bare branches,
Echo replies to the satyrs in the woods
As they call to their beloved nymphs.
The coursing rivers run with waves
And flood over their ancient banks.
Others are in heaven and I am in hell,
For cruel Love has made my suffering eternal.

English translation by Paul Archer of the text of Zephiro spira e ‘l bel tempo rimena by Marchetto Cara (1470-1525), based on 'Zefiro torna' by Francesco Petrarca (Petrarch).

Zephiro spira e ‘l bel tempo rimena

Zephiro spira e ‘l bel tempo rimena
Amor promette gaudio a gli animali
L’ampia campagna de bei fiori e piena
Ogni cor si prepara ai dolci strali
Progne scordata de l’antica pena
Verso il nostro orizonte spiega l’ali.
Ognun vive contento i(o) me lamento
Ch’amor m’ha fatto albergo di tormento

Zephyro spira e gli arbori di fronde
Adornano soi densi e sparsi rami,
A satiri tra boschi ecco risponde
s’ avien che alcun l’ amata ninfa chiami.
Scorreno fiumi rei con veloce onde
Tanto che sazian le sue antique arame.
Altrui possiede ‘l ciel ed io l’inferno,
ch’Amor crudel fatto ha ‘l mio male eterno.

Copyright notice. The translation is provided as an aid to musicians and audiences. Publication of the translation in print or digital formats is expressly forbidden unless permission from the author has been first obtained and acknowledgement of authorship is duly made. Permission will usually be granted so please contact Paul Archer with details of how you wish to make use of the translation.

For more translations into English of early music texts, go to:
Translations of early music texts.

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