Du Bellay to his Native Language

Joachim du Bellay

Happy who like Ulysses has explored,
Or he who sought a far the golden fleece,
And safe returned, his mind with wisdom stored,
Amidst his native vales retires in peace.
When shall I hail again my village spires,—
The blue smoke rising from that village see,
And the poor mansion of my simple sires,
Its garden walks a realm, and more to me!
Dearer to me the home that thought recalls
Than Roman palaces and gorgeous halls,
Richer than marble or than sculptured stone
The gray slate on my humble roof that shone,
More bright than vaunted Tiber's ancient tide
My gentle Loire's soft waves, that murmuring glide,
Sweeter than ocean's breezes fresh and fair
My lovely Anjou's bright and balmy air,
And greater to this longing heart of mine
My little Lire than Mont Palatine!