gascony

August 15, 2010

Noticeable throughout Gascony and Aquitaine was this loose wildflower/annual mix planted along  field edges for wildlife value. A delicate visual touch and thoughtful and respectful to the environment  . . .

. . . in Nérac, the bulging river is crossed by bridges and edged with tow paths. A good deal of business happens around the locks and enthusiastic tourists take river boat trips in this watery landscape.  The stone work is very beautiful but many old buildings display the oak timber structure as beautifully . . .

. . .these buildings, joined together, running up the slope from the river Baise, show an interesting variety in the pattern of the timbers  . . .

. . . but no need for Patrick Blanc here!

and in Bordeaux, the capital city of Aquitaine, so just north – east of Gascony, a watery landscape of a different type – user friendly and inviting, urban and  playful, beside the  wide Garonne . . .

He who gives his will to love
takes from me my peace of mind,
distancing and throwing me
nearly past what’s known to me;
therefore I now greatly fear
I’ve put friendship in one such
who has kept me from my goal
and now won’t help me a bit:
he won’t let me off at all,
but I suffer stubbornly:
that will get us what awaits.

One who wants to be restored
won’t have much to re-collect:
at least this is what I hope,
for one hardly gets great power
or great riches that empower,
without suffering from much work:
therefore I have put up with
the mistreatment Love gives out:
I will yet by labor win
and for mercy I will beg
her, who won’t agree for me.

Peire de Valeira Gascon Troubadour 12C  trans.J Donalson

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