fair lady, if it were to please you to grant me the joy of wanting you to love me, you could ask nothing that i would not do as best i could, be it foolish or wise. i shall do as you bid and abandon all others for you. i never want to leave you and this is what i most desire.
when the sweet breeze turns bitter, and the leaf falls down from the branch, and the birds change their language... i, here, sigh, and sing of love. whom holds me bound and captured. love, whom i never have had in my power. i am weary; for, i have won nothing from love but toil and torture. for, nothing is so hard to get as the thing i desire. and nothing fills me with such longing, as the thing i cannot have. i rejoice in a jewel, so precious that i never loved another thing so much.
when i am with her, i am struck so dumb. i cannot tell her my desire. and when i go away from her, i think i lose my mind completely, and everything i know. the most beautiful lady a man ever saw is not worth a glove next to her. when the whole world grows dark, where she is —see, there is light. the lord let me live long enough to have her, or see her going to bed. i start, i burn, i tremble all over. sleeping and waking, for love of her.
i am so afraid of dying. i dare not think of asking her; however, i shall serve her two years or three. then, maybe, she will know the truth. i neither die, nor live, nor get well. i do not feel my suffering, and yet it is great suffering because i cannot tell the future of her love. whether i shall have it, or when. for, in her is all the pity. which can raise me up, or make me fall. i am pleased when she maddens me, when she makes me stand with my mouth open staring. i am pleased when she laughs at me, makes a fool of me right to my face or behind my back. for, after this bad time, the good will come. very quickly, if such is her pleasure.
if she does not want me, i would have liked to die that day. when she took me as her servant in love, oh lord, how gently she slew me. when she showed me the look of her love and locked me in such an enclosure, i never want to see another. i am full of worries, and yet i enjoy it. if i fear my lady and court her, i will be false or true. it all depends on her, faithful or full of tricks. a vulgar or a courtly man, full of torment or at my ease.
it may please some and annoy others, but she can retain me, if that’s what she wants. cercamon says: a man will hardly belong in court if he despairs of love.