The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #94726   Message #2146725
Posted By: Marion
11-Sep-07 - 05:01 PM
Thread Name: Songs of Canadian slavery?
Subject: RE: Songs of Canadian slavery?
Angelique's Farewell

2007 by Marion Parsons

Farewell Montreal, I make my amends
Before my accusers, my foes and my friends
And beg for the pardon of God and the Crown
For striking the fire that swallowed the town.

Farewell my Ti-Claude, mon seul bien-aime
But I cannot follow and you could not stay
So if you should come to the land of the free
The blackened Atlantic will tell you of me.

Farewell mes enfants, I leave you alone
With wet clay to suckle and blankets of stone
My love gave me one and le Sieur gave me two
But none doomed to linger a cold winter through.

Farewell ma Maitresse, you devil of whores
Who fed by the labour that never was yours
So when you grow feeble, to heaven you plead
May God show you mercy as you showed to me.

Farewell mon esprit, perhaps you shall fly
As smoke from my pyre escapes to the sky
Perhaps you shall vanish like ash in the wind
No cross left to mark me, no bones and no kin.

Notes: Marie-Joseph Angelique was a slave who was hanged in 1734 for setting her mistress' house on fire; the fire spread and destroyed most of old Montreal. It was apparently part of an attempt to escape with her lover Claude Thibault, who did get away successfully. After being hanged, Angelique's body was burned and the ashes thrown to the wind.

mon seul bien-aime: my only beloved (I don't know how to do the accent; it's pronounced ay-MAY.

mes enfants: my children

le Sieur: the Lord, i.e., her late owner Lord Francheville

ma Maitresse: my mistress

mon esprit: my spirit