A song takes hold of the mind,
an old song in a root-bound tongue
erupting like infection, testing
hard-won, built immunity
against diseases of a childhood gone.
Mon père, aussi ma mère
n’avaient que moi d’enfants…
la destinée, la rose au bois….
A song of no voice, yet belonging to many
soundless singers in the night
or hummed by day in my own throat
as I work or walk about
putting things away, taking things out.
…et c’est comme ça que ça se passe,
du moins dans notre canton….
la destinée, la rose au bois…
Once it starts there is no getting from its grip
any more than you can kill dead ancestors
or grow your baby self again.
du moins dans notre canton..
la destinee, la rose au bois
A good friend told me that it happens
to him also now and then. He said
to get rid of it try substitution.
Singing Home On The Range works well.
O give me a home
where the buffalo roam
and the deer and the antelope play…
where seldom is heard
a discouraging word
and the skies are not cloudy all day…
And so it does. It takes the spell away to
where seldom is heard a discouraging word
and the skies are not cloudy all day.
This traditional folksong is what is known as a response song–a single voice sings a line, and his audience sings it back to him. There are innumerable verses and variations. Recent performances of it by Quebecois artists can be seen/heard on YouTube.