Ma dame, quoi qu'es de mi absent
Ma dame, quoi qu’es de mi absent,
Proi que Dé sol cele terre defendt
Quan ce mercies outreement.
Oú vait, te suit mi molt bans cuer,
Si mi cors doit a demorer.
O, voil que soie avuec m’amor!
Car puisse faire mas pres de la tor
Dans baillie qu’ele ma joie donner.
My lady, although you are away from me,
I pray that God defends that land
Where you are giving completely your mercy.
Wherever you go, there follows my very unworthy heart,
Even if my body must remain (elsewhere).
O, how I wish I were with my love!
Then could I go much closer to the tower
Wherein rules she who gives me joy.
This piece is the seventh in a series of poems dedicated to my good friend (and patroness) Maitresse Aenor d'Anjou. When I entered into her service (and the service of her lord and husband, Master Efenwealt Wystle), one of our agreements was that I would compose poems in her honor. What is more medieval, I thought (and still think!) then to write love poems to a married noblewoman? As a result, I have been trying to write at least one poem a month for her. I have also attempted to make these poems work as songs by coupling the lyrics with existing tunes (technically called contrafacta). See my list of poems for the other chansons in this series.
This song is based in form (AAABBCCB rhyme scheme, 8-syllable lines) on the Anonymous “Dieus sal la terra e.l pais” collected in: Bruckner, Matilda et al, ed. Songs of the Women Troubadours. New York: Garland Publishing, 1995. p. 136-7.