• Gris - Il était une forêt... English translation

    8 août 2009, 4h15m

    Well, I decided to translate the lyrics of Gris' wonderful album Il était une forêt... for all you people who love this album but don't speak French. I did this to the best of my knowledge and capacities but I am no expert translator, so feel free to point out if there is something that does not feel quite right to you. Also, keep in mind that a lot of the French language's intrinsic beauty is lost in translation, but at least you should get a good grasp of Gris' lyrical themes in general.

    1. There Was a Forest…

    There was a forest
    Where mankind's cupidity
    Was the mere shadow of a an oppressive past

    There was a forest
    Where the trees' bark
    Reflected the beauty of a lost world

    There was a forest
    Where the night's song
    Awakened the sun of another life

    There was a forest
    Where the skies' sanctuary
    Watered the dried up lands of the gods

    There was a forest…
    There was a forest…
    There was a forest…
    There was a forest…

    2. The Reception of the Happy People

    Be quiet… be quiet… shut up…
    Emphatic larvae… you defecate with your mouths… and you drown me in your dejections…
    To disappear… to disappear elsewhere…
    Far… very far… too far…

    It is a vicious orchestra that plays its popular symphony tonight
    It knows how to strum the sensitive strings of the sleeping slugs
    These foul and dribbling wounds that, tonight, drive me
    To join, in spite of myself, those dumping ground musicians

    It is a damned orchestra that accompanies my suicide
    The violinists are mutilated and dressed in grey trousers; their eye-sockets are empty
    The woodwind players are tramps, brown and drugged to the bone
    Their burning lips, as they blow into their reeds, produce rattling sounds

    The timpanist bludgeons children with his erected genitals
    The brass instruments splutter the echoes of the dying herd's laughter
    The cymbals relate the disgusting rape of an exemplary woman
    Accompanied by a schizophrenic man with a bright snare drum

    The height of horror is the sight of the audience of those demonic harmonies
    A contemptible and repulsive nation, serve them all the ammonia
    With a crepuscular gaze, they assist to the eradication of the beautiful values
    But they pay not to see well, they leave aside their own hearts

    The obnoxious armor of a scale with sordid agitations
    Imposes atrocious nuances of flats on the Ode to Joy
    Their shadows speak and mate around my brain
    Be damned, bastard beasts, I will drown you in my sobs

    But in this dissonant crowd where the abhorrent madness
    Poisons everybody as soon as they sit down at the table
    The wisest is ironically the conductor, austere metronome
    That is my hanged body, swinging the measure at the gates of hell

    3. Scar

    So many times I have wanted to put an end
    To this impenetrable darkness that is life
    To this lake of tears and blood that is my bruised existence

    So many times, I have seen the shadow of this rope
    On the wall of my overburdened and grey remorse
    Inviting me to its macabre dance
    The one that would free me of the rough sea of my madness

    My wounds are bleeding once again
    Bringing me back into the limbs of the past
    Violently hammering at my heart
    Shooting its venom into the deepest of its dungeons

    Yet I can never resist
    Seeing your gracious and distorted face again
    You, monster of a thousand cruel shapes
    The one that men name and fear, eternal unhappiness

    Kill me, kill me, I beg you
    Rip apart my sickening and moldy flesh
    Torture my head, impose your pain on it
    Until death dries out my tears

    Bring my vulnerability to agony
    Chain hate and contempt to my martyr
    Consume my essence, lead it to the throes of anxiety
    Drag my heart to the gallows and drape me in solitude

    Let me contemplate the cold marble of my tomb
    Abandon myself to this stream that is infected with deep bitterness
    Take me away forever in the limbs of saving extinction
    In Gehenna and in sinister processions

    Scar, lay down your veil on my sick soul
    Bring it horror no more, but beauty instead
    Offer it a beauty so splendid that death shall strike who dares contemplate it

    Offer it a beauty so splendid that death shall strike who dares contemplate it…

    4. Would You Like to Dance?

    I am but the shadow of a shadow, which struts idly
    On the shimmering flagstones of the long and triumphant pavements
    Nobody can believe me, and no one would know how to see me
    I already hear her replying to me: "what about me?"

    You cannot touch me for I bear the worst of infections
    I spread it to all those I love at the will of my impulsions
    I have never wanted to propagate this abhorrent bacterium
    Forgive me; I should never have stayed plastered in your lives

    Why did I have to be possessed of this terrible curse?
    This horrible syndrome that is to love with an unspeakable force
    But above all, why did you love me in return?
    Me, the poor magician who failed his last trick

    Who am I? Where do I come from? Where am I going?
    All of this is as clear to me as a sob in the snow
    The accordion no longer plays its joyful chords
    And it has spit its last sinister note on my head

    Solitude becomes enamored of my heart
    Flayed by my crying musings
    My soul is stabbed by its hundred thousand daggers
    Ripped apart by its countless razors

    What about you? Do you still want to melt into my tumid heart?
    To tell me that you still dance with life as long as it lets you lead?
    The dance floor is more slippery for me who has never been there
    You do not know who I am; me neither, but this is how I am named:

    I am the disguised ugliness and the badly dressed happiness
    I am the cured plague and the slashed joy
    I am the dilapidated cross and the badly forged nail
    I am the atheist Jesus and the wacko Buddha

    5. Deep Misanthropy

    In the misty forests,
    I have wandered far from your tainted kingdoms

    Under the icy rains,
    I have wandered far from your damned race

    In the dark mountains,
    The winds have caressed my face

    Under the grey and dreary sky,
    My soul rests in eternal sleep

    In solitude, my corpse lies
    Dead far away from your impure lands

    Death in silence…

    6. The Dryad