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REVIVISCENCE (français / anglais)

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REVIVISCENCE 

« I am a weak, defenceless child beside thee »

        Mary Elizabeth Coleridge

 

Mon Prince des livres d’or, nous rêvions de mots

Plus denses que notre sang, plus purs que nos prunelles,

De mots qui rivalisent avec le chant des eaux

Et le langage secret du vol des hirondelles.

 

              Athanase Vantchev de Thracy

Paris, ce jeudi 5 avril, l’An de Grâce MMVII

Glose :

Reviviscence (n.f.) : du bas latin reviviscentia, lui-même du verbe reviviscere, « revenir à la vie », « ressusciter ». Action de reprendre vie. La reviviscence d’un souvenir.

Mary Elizabeth Coleridge (1861-1907) : poète et écrivain britannique. Elle enseigna au London Working Women’s College pendant douze ans, de 1985 à 1907, et écrivit des poèmes sous le pseudonyme d’Anodos, emprunté à George MacDonald. Coleridge publia cinq romans dont le plus connu fut The King with Two Faces (Le Roi à deux faces). Elle était apparentée au grand poète anglais Samuel Taylor Coleridge (1772-1834) et de la poétesse Sara Coleridge (1802-1852).

  

ENGLISH (My translation into English) :

REVIVISCENCE

« I am a weak, defenceless child beside thee »

           Mary Elizabeth Coleridge

 

My Prince of golden books, we dreamed about words

Denser than our blood, purer than our pupils,

Words, my Prince, which compete with the song of water,

And with the secret language of the light swallows’ flight.

Notes:

Mary Elizabeth Coleridge (1861 – 1907) was a British novelist and poet, who also wrote essays and reviews. She taught at the London Working Women's College for twelve years from 1895 to 1907. She wrote poetry under the pseudonym Anodos, taken from George MacDonald; other influences on her were Richard Watson Dixon and Christina Rossetti.

Coleridge published five novels, the best known of those being The King with Two Faces, which earned her £900 in royalties in 1897. She travelled widely throughout her life, although her home was in London, where she lived with her family. Her father was Arthur Duke Coleridge who, along with the singer Jenny Lind, was responsible for the formation of the London Bach Choir in 1875. Other family friends included Robert Browning, Alfred, Lord Tennyson, John Malais and Fanny Kemble.

Mary Coleridge was the great great niece of Samuel Taylor Coleridge and the great niece of Sara Coleridge, the author of Phantasmion. She died from complications arising from appendicitis while on holiday in Harrogate in 1907, leaving unfinished a manuscript for her next novel, and hundreds of unpublished poems.