Sus, sus, enfans ! qu’on empoigne la coupe !

This is a good-humoured drinking poem from Saint-Amant, wine, women and song without the wine and the women. The spirit of this poem is very similar to Fitzgerald’s translation of the Rubai’Yat of Omar Khayyam, which has been featured on this blog in various instalments. Both praise the virtues of wine as a source of pleasure and an exhortation to not take life too seriously but have fun.

So let’s have fun with this poem. The orgy of the title is strictly Bacchanalian in its strictest sense.

Marc-Antoine Girard de Saint-Amant 


Sus, sus, enfans ! qu’on empoigne la coupe !
Je suis crevé de manger de la soupe.
Du vin ! du vin ! cependant qu’il est frais.
Verse, garçon, verse jusqu’aux bords,
Car je veux chiffler à longs traits
A la santé des vivants et des morts.

Pour du vin blanc, je n’en tasteray guère ;
Je crains toujours le syrop de l’esguière,
Dont la couleur me pourroit attraper.
Baille moi donc de ce vin vermeil :
C’est luy seul qui me fait tauper,
Bref, c’est mon feu, mon sang et mon soleil.

O qu’il est doux ! J’en ay l’âme ravie,
Et ne croy pas qu’il se trouve en la vie
Un tel plaisir que de boire d’autant:
Fay-moy raison, mon cher amy Faret
Ou tu seras tout à l’instant
Privé du nom qui rime à cabaret.

From <;

In the first stanza, the poet craves more wine because he is tired of eating soup. So he summons the waiter to bring wine, as long as it is cool, to drink the health of everybody, whether they are living or dead.

In the second stanza we find out that the poet doesn’t favour white wine, but needs red wine to feel satisfied, to bring him fire, blood and sun.

In the third stanza, the poet bris over with pleasure at the experience of drinking wine, and asks for agreement from one Faret, who , from the context, looks like he is the innkeeper of the establishment where Saint-Amant is drinking.

Roll out the barrel, indeed.

The Poetry Dude

2 thoughts on “Sus, sus, enfans ! qu’on empoigne la coupe !

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s