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  • A Nina (To Nina)
    Venice (Veneto)

    Quel di che te go visto,
    Quel di che ti m'ha piasso,
    Mi no go fato un passo
    Ma no so sta più mi.

    No go pensà al to stato,
    No go cercà el to nome,
    No go savesto come
    Me so trovà con ti.

    So che ti gà do oci,
    Che dixe tante cose;
    So che ti gà una vose
    Che canta fino al “si.„

    O nata da una zingana,
    O fia de una regina,
    El cuor t'ha dito Nina,
    E ti ga dà del “ti!„

    Ti poi mostrarte soto
    Qualunque forma strana,
    Metterte la sotana,
    No vogio dir de chi.

    Un certo che me avisa,
    Che ti me xe vicina,
    So che ti xe la Nina,
    Sento che ti xe ti.

    Nina, se ti xe un anzolo
    Cascà da qualche stella,
    Quando ti torni in quella,
    Portime su anca mi.

    Se ti ze dona sentite,
    Qua, sulla mia banchetta,
    Te menarò in barchetta,
    E vogarò per ti.

    That day when first I saw thee,
    That day thou didst so please me,
    I find no balm to ease me,
    I'm not myself, d'ye see.

    I think not of thy station,
    Thy name has not been told me,
    I seek but to behold thee,
    And find myself near thee.

    Two eyes hast thou so lovely,
    So many things expressing;
    The sweetest voice possessing,
    That sings as high as “si.”

    Wert thou of Gipsy origin,
    Or born of lineage royal,
    My heart would still be loyal,
    And think of thee as “ti!”

    Howe'er disguised thy form were,
    However strange appearing,
    Whatever garments wearing,—
    Whose I will not say here:

    If thou unseen wert near me,
    Tho' no sign might reveal it,
    Yet I should surely feel it,
    That thou, my love, wert near.

    And if thou art an angel fair,
    New-fallen from some star there,
    When mounting up afar there,
    Then with thee, dear, take me.

    But if thou art a woman, dear,
    Ah, come and sit beside me,
    Then o'er the water glide we:
    Oh joy, to fly with thee!

    Return to Folk Songs Page

    Additional Resources
    Famous Italians Folk Dances Folktales
    Folklore/Legends Proverbs/Proverbi Traditions

    Marzo, Eduardo. Songs of Italy; sixty-five Tuscan, Florentine, Lombardian and other Italian folk- and popular songs. New York: G. Schirmer, 1904. 44


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