THE MANY-MANSIONED HOUSE
AND OTHER POEMS


By
EDWARD WILLIAM THOMSON




 

TO BRITTANY*

FROM THE FRENCH OF W. CHAPMAN



I NEVER trod thy cliffs’ aspiring height,
Nor saw thy pines their golden balsam store,
Nor watched thy balanced shallops winging white,
Yet, Breton land, I love thee evermore.

My love is strong as thy old oaks at core,

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Toward them my heart is often taking flight,
Because we hold, throughout our land, a right
In that pure blood which through my veins doth pour.

Yes, thee I love with ancient memories—
Thy reeds, thy heaths where Druid work endures,

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Thy storied people and thy shore-beat seas.

And when returning May with balm allures,
I dream the murmurous evening’s eastern breeze
Brings airs of perfume vaguely from thy moors. [Page 142]




* Mr. W. Chapman, the French-Canadian poet, is son to an English father and a French mother.  He was crowned by the Academy of France for his noble volume Les Aspirations.  Mr. Chapman, to whom both English and French are mother-tongues, has graciously approved this and the following translations from his verses. [back]