Guillaume de Machaut “Je vivroie liement/Liement me deport”

This is a 14th. century French virelai written by Guillaume de Machaut (1300-1377).

I should lead a happy life,
sweet creature,
if only you truly realized
that you where the cause of all
my concern.
Lady of cheerful bearing,
pleasing, bright and pure,
often the woe I suffer
to serve you loyally

makes me say ‘alas!’
And you may be sure
that I can in no wise
go on living like this, if it lasts
any longer

For you are merciless to me
and pitilessly obdurate,
and have put such longing
into my heart

that it will certainly die
a most dismal death,
unless for its relief
your mercy is soon

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