Daily Archives: July 19, 2017

If You Go Away

Most people must be familiar with the song, If You Go Away. The original, Ne Me Quitte Pas was in French, and I always assumed – not being a French speaker – that it was a fairly accurate translation. This lovely song has been recorded by numerous artists. Here is Jacques Brel singing it:

I was curious to see the lyrics translated into English. It didn’t take long to find a translation. I like the English lyrics but they don’t compare to these exquisite words:

Ne Me Quitte Pas
by Jacques Brel
Translated to English by Jamie J. Brunson

Please don’t leave me.
We can forget
Everything can be forgotten
Look, it’s gone already
Forget the times
And the misunderstandings
The lost time
The blows
The hours that robbed our hearts of joy
Don’t leave me (4 times)

I offer you pearls of rain
From places in me where there is no rain
I will raise the earth until the day I die
To cover your body in light and gold
I’ll make a place for us
Where love is king
Love is law
And you are queen.
Please don’t leave me. (4 times)

Don’t leave me
I beg you
Ah! Do you understand my words?
Are they senseless, the words I speak
Of our history?
It is king
It does not have to perish
Just don’t leave me.

How often has the fire of an old volcano
Erupting, burn the land
Then in that place more wheat grows than at harvest.

Each day ends when evening comes
The brilliant night sky is red and black
Can the night be brilliant without both?
Please don’t leave me. (4 times)

I have implored you
With my words
If you leave me, I will unbecome myself
And become the shadow of your shadow
So that I can watch you dance and smile
So that I can hear you sing and laugh
As the shadow of your shadow.

Please don’t leave me.
Please don’t leave me.
Please don’t leave me.
Please don’t leave me.

There are also numerous recordings of If You Go Away. I’ve chosen to post Neil Diamond’s rendition:

Whether in English or French, these are beautiful songs, and the tune is the same for both, but after comparing the lyrics, I think it’s a bit of a stretch to call them the same song.

What do you think?

©Jane Paterson Basil


I’m finding it hard to stay calm today. If whoever is doing this to me reads this post, no doubt it will give them a lot of satisfaction, or maybe I’ve misunderstood, and it makes no difference to them. If their intentions were other than I believed, I’ve played into their hands.

This isn’t a joke, and it’s not fiction. I feel very isolated right now. It may be paranoia, but I have a feeling that no one can reach me. This would be a personal disaster, and I don’t feel I’ve done anything to deserve it.

I’ll find out soon enough…

It’s odd that the Daily Post came up with this word today, of all days:

©Jane Paterson Basil