Tunes Tuesday: Edith Piaf

I really didn’t set out to sing a song about lovers taking their own lives together, but it seems that is what I have done. My energy is definitely low, but not that low! It did pass my mind today, my lovely Vals day bouquet still blooming, that it would be nice to do a love-themed cover in honour of our favourite Saint (or not, whatever, I’m not getting into that argument!), and many upbeat, positive, life affirming songs did pop up. For instance, I could have shared me and Dee’s a cappella version of “Throw your arms around me”, which we sang for Chab at our wedding reception. That might have been nice. Or our slowed down, soulful version of “Tell Him”. That too, would have been appropriate.

No, today I randomly go for Edith Piaf’s “Les Amants d’un Jour”. To be fair, Dee and I couldn’t tee up a singing meet so I was more limited in my options. I also didn’t want anything that asked too much of me vocally or that sounded too ridiculous without a proper piano accompaniment. I haven’t sung it for years, but it’s so beautiful and melancholy. The lyrics tell the sad story of a pair of lovers (les amants) who come to a little hotel ‘au papier jauni’ (with yellowing wallpaper- you can imagine the kind) to find ‘un coin pour s’aimer’- literally, a corner to love each other in. God I love the French language. The singer, a tortured soul, tells of how the couple were found lifeless the next day, holding hands, ‘tranquils et unis‘. Despite this tragic act, the love she had seen between them, the light behind their eyes, ‘le soleil au fond de leurs yeux’ had given her just a taste of happiness. Just enough, it seems, to haunt her forever.

This one is dedicated to my French and francophone friends and family, all of whom are far too far away. Je vous embrasse tres tres fort.

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