Three French Love Poems


You can find lots of wonderful french love poems that cover a whole range of moods. Intense and passionate; lighthearted and flirtatious; melancholy and brooding; ….or a mix of different emotions (love is pretty complicated, after all ).

And there’s nothing better than spending a romantic holiday in France and being able to whisper sweet nothings to each other in the local language!

You don’t have to be super-fluent – you can just learn a few romantic french sayings and knock the socks off your sweetheart! 🙂

Here are a few examples…(select the blue button below to listen> as you read…)

And the real beauty of these poems comes from the language itself – the naunces and rhythms of the french words. So it is hard to translate them into english and have the same effect, as you will see!

We’ve put together three beautiful french love poems, written by some of the greatest literary figures in France.

1. Famous French Love Poems

The nineteenth century was dominated by the Romantic Movement, not just in writing but other areas like art and music, and it is during this period that some of the greatest french love poems were written.

You have probably heard the name Victor Hugo (1802-1885), well known for his novels Les Miserables and Notre-Dame de Paris (the Hunchback of Notre Dame). In France, he is actually better known for his poems and is considered one of the leaders of the Romantic Movement.

This is a beautiful – but sad – french poem written by Hugo:

Demain dès l’aube
Demain, dès l’aube, à l’heure où blanchit la campagne,
Je partirai. Vois-tu, je sais que tu m’attends.
J’irai par la forêt, j’irai par la montagne.
Je ne puis demeurer loin de toi plus longtemps.
Je marcherai les yeux fixés sur mes pensées,
Sans rien voir au dehors, sans entendre aucun bruit,
Seul, inconnu, le dos courbé, les mains croisées,
Triste, et le jour pour moi sera comme la nuit.
Je ne regarderai ni l’or du soir qui tombe,
Ni les voiles au loin descendant vers Harfleur,
Et quand j’arriverai, je mettrai sur ta tombe
Un bouquet de houx vert et de bruyère en fleur.

Translated into English

Tomorrow at Dawn
Tomorrow, at dawn, at the hour when the countryside becomes pale with snow,
I will leave. You see, I know that you are waiting for me.
I will go by the forest, I will go by the mountain.
I cannot stay far from you any longer.

I will walk with my eyes fixed on my thoughts,
Without seeing anything outside, without hearing any noise,
Alone, unknown, back curved, hands crossed,
Sad, and the day for me will be like the night.
I will not look at the gold of the evening which falls,
Nor the faraway sails descending towards Harfleur.
And when I arrive, I will put on your tomb
A green bouquet of holly and flowering heather.

2. Passionate French Love Poems

Some of the most intense and romantic french love poems are written by Pierre de Ronsard (1524-1585) – one of the greatest poets in France before Victor Hugo.

Here is one of his poems, which is just beautiful:

Maîtresse, embrasse-moi, baise-moi, serre-moi
Maîtresse, embrasse-moi, baise-moi, serre-moi,
Haleine contre haleine, échauffe-moi la vie,
Mille et mille baisers donne-moi je te prie,
Amour veut tout sans nombre, amour n’a point de loi.

Translated into English

Mistress, embrace me, kiss me, hold me tight,
breath against breath, breath me life,
thousand and thousand kisses give me I beg you,
Love wants everything without condition, love has no law.

3. Evocative French Love Poems

Baudelaire was another famous romantic writer, this is one of his most uplifting poems:

Parfum Exotique
Quand, les deux yeux fermés, en un soir chaud d’automne,
Je respire l’odeur de ton sein chaleureux,
Je vois se dérouler des rivages heureux
Qu’éblouissent les feux d’un soleil monotone ;
Une île paresseuse où la nature donne
Des arbres singuliers et des fruits savoureux ;
Des hommes dont le corps est mince et vigoureux,
Et des femmes dont l’œil par sa franchise étonne.
Guidé par ton odeur vers de charmants climats,
Je vois un port rempli de voiles et de mâts
Encore tout fatigués par la vague marine,
Pendant que le parfum des verts tamariniers,
Qui circule dans l’air et m’enfle la narine,
Se mêle dans mon âme au chant des mariniers.

Translated into English

Exotic Perfume
When, both eyes closed, on a hot autumn night,
I breathe in the fragrance of your welcoming heart,
I see happy shores spread out before me,
Blazing in the fire or a monotonous sun;
A lazy isle to which nature has given
Lonely trees, savory fruits,
Men whose bodies are slender and vigorous,
And women in whose eyes shines a surprising candor.
Guided by your fragrance to these charming moods,
I see a port filled with sails and masts
Still tired by the waves of the sea,
While the perfume of the green tamarinds,
That flows through the air, and fills my nose,
Mingles in my soul to the sailors’ song.

MORE French Phrases

More french love quotes

French Love Phrases

Romantic France

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