Le Coeur Supplicié : The Tortured Heart|
Translated by Holly Tannen
assisted by Lydia Rand
Le Coeur Supplicié
Mon triste coeur bave à la poupe,
Ithyphalliques et pioupiesques,
Quand ils auront tari leurs chiques,
The Tortured Heart
My sad heart drools at the poop,
Standing phallic and soldierlike
When they've exhausted their quids,
Ithyphallic: Erect (Greek). A reference to artificial phalli carried by the Bacchantes in their celebrations.
Pioupious: red-coated soldiers from the center of France.
Abracadabrantesques: from "abracadabra", a magical formula used in amulets for protection against fever. Said to derive from the name of the Greek god Abraxas, whose essence integrated good and evil.
Translator's note: This poem exists in three versions, called sequentially "Le Coeur Supplicié" ("The Tortured Heart"), "Le Coeur Volé" ("The Stolen Heart"), and "Coeur de Pitre" ("Heart of a Clown"). I have translated the first version, which he sent to his teacher, George Izambard in the "Lettre du Voyant" of 13 May 1871.
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|Holly Tannen teaches folklore and anthropology, and has lectured on contemporary magic at U.C. Berkeley and at Yale University. Her recordings include "Invocation", "Between the Worlds", and "Rime of the Ancient Matriarch"|
|updated 25 April 2002 : 9:44 Caspar (Pacific) time|
All text, translations, and songs copyright © 2002 by Holly Tannen