Charles Cros: “Le Hareng Saur” / “The Smoked Herring”

THE SMOKED HERRING

Once upon a time there was a big white wall — bare, bare, bare,
Against the wall there stood a ladder — high, high, high,
And on the ground a smoked herring — dry, dry, dry,

He comes, holding in his hands — dirty, dirty, dirty,
A heavy hammer and a big nail — sharp, sharp, sharp,
A ball of string — big, big, big,

Then he climbs the ladder — high, high, high,
And drives the sharp nail — tock, tock, tock,
Way up on the big white wall — bare, bare, bare,

He drops the hammer — down, down, down,
To the nail he fastens a string — long, long, long,
And, at the end, the smoked herring — dry, dry, dry,

He comes down the ladder — high, high, high,
He picks up the hammer — heavy, heavy, heavy,
And goes off somewhere — far, far, far,

And ever afterwards the smoked herring — dry, dry, dry,
At the end of that string — long, long, long,
Very slowly sways — forever and ever and ever.

I made up this story — silly, silly, silly,
To infuriate the squares — solemn, solemn, solemn,
And to amuse the children — little, little, little.

 

Translated from Charles Cros’ French by Kenneth Rexroth

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~ by matt on 17 October 2007.

5 Responses to “Charles Cros: “Le Hareng Saur” / “The Smoked Herring””

  1. Brilliant.

  2. El aroma de los grandes, jámas se pierde…Escribir, suele ser un ejercicio contra el olvido. Vaya si Carles Cros lo ha logrado…Un abrazo.

  3. Oui! Tres belle video. J’adore cette poeme, et que votre video va si bien avec elle. Bien fait.

  4. Annette–la vidéo n’est pas la mienne, mais par David Gautier. (Je l’aurais noté la source.)

    Merci de votre visite!–Matt

  5. Une jolie poeme…je l’aime aussi

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