9 Se La Face Ay Pale

Guillaume Dufay (1400-1474)

Se la face ay pale,
La cause est amer.
C’est la principale.
Et tant m’est amer, amer,
Qu’en la mer me voudroye voir.
Or, scet bien de voir
La belle a qui suis,
Que nul bien avoir
Sans elle ne puis.

Se ay pesante malle,
De dueil a porter,
Cette amour est male
Pour moy de porter.
Car soy deporter,
Ne veult devouloir
Fors qu’a son vouloir
Obeisse, et puis
Qu’elle a tel pouvoir,
Sans elle ne puis.

C’est la plus reale
Qu’on puist regarder,
De s’amour leiale
Ne me puis guarder.
Fol sui de agarder.
Ne faire devoir
D’amours recevoir
Fors d’elle, je cuij;
Se ne veil douloir,
Sans elle ne puis.


If the face is pale,
The cause is love.
It’s the principle cause,
And much for me is bitter, bitter…
That I would like to see myself in the ocean
Now, it is good to see
The Beauty for whom I live,
For without her I can find
Nothing good.

If it were bad to carry
A weight of sorrow,
Then this love is bad
For me to carry,
Since I am carried away.
I do not wish to devalue
How strongly I want
To obey her desire…
And since she has such power,
Without her, I cannot…

She is the most real
That one can regard:
I cannot guard myself
From her loyal love.
I am mad from it.
Don’t make a duty
Of receiving love
So strongly from her
If one does not desire pain.
Without her, I cannot…