Page:Mistral - Mirèio. A Provençal poem.djvu/55

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Canto II.]
29
THE LEAF-PICKING.

"But, ah! thou knowest better far to gather
The muslin of thy cap4 than doth the other!
My little sister is not plain nor dull,
But thou,—thou art so much more beautiful!"
"Oh, what a Vincen!" cried Mirèio,
And suddenly the half-culled branch let go.

Sing, magnarello, merrily,
As the green leaves you gather!
In their third sleep the silk-worms lie,
And lovely is the weather.
Like brown bees that in open glades
From rosemary gather honey,
The mulberry-trees swarm full of maids,
Glad as the air is sunny!

"And so you think I have a pretty face,
More fair than hers?" Then sighed the lad, "Ah, yes!"
"But what more have I than this little wench?"
"Mother divine! What more hath the goldfinch
Than hath the fragile wren,—unless it be
Beauty and grace and richer minstrelsy?

"What more? Ah, my poor sister! Hear me speak,—
Thou wilt not get the white out of the leek:
Her eyes are like the water of the sea,
Blue, clear,—thine, black, and they flash gloriously.
And, O Mirèio! when on me they shine,
I seem to drain a bumper of cooked wine!5