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The Neapolitan
instruments

The mandolin

Texts of the neapolitan songs

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Chi sì tu?


Museca: Vincenzo D'Annibale,

Vierse: Roberto Bracco.

Anno: 1924

Who are you?


Music: Vincenzo D'Annibale,

Lyrics: Roberto Bracco.

Year: 1924

Chi sì tu ch' 'a tiempo assaje,
'Mmiez' â gente, sto ncuntranno?
Bella comm'a 'na Madonna
Mentre tantu male faje!
Chi sì tu, ca pure quanno
Io te veco 'nzuonno, sola,
Nun me dice 'na parola
E de me pietà nun aje?
Pe' tte mme struje e scampo
Cchiù nun aggio,
Pe' tte io ancora campo
Sentennome murì.
Pe' tte, 'nu juorno o 'n'ato,
Murarraggio
E, intanto, no, nun saccio,
Nun saccio tu chi sì!

Chi sì tu, comm'a 'na rosa
Senz'addore e armata 'e spine,
Che cammina superbiosa,
Cchiù regina d' 'e rregine?
Chi sì tu che spanne 'a luce
D'oro e ddoce 'e primmavera
E ch'a mme me lasse ascuro
Cu 'na sciorta accussì nera?
Pe' tte sò addeventato
'Nu cecato,
E cchiù 'nu raggio 'e sole
Io nun 'o veco ascì.
Pe tte, 'nu juorno o 'n'ato,
Murarraggio
E, intanto, no, nun saccio,
Nun saccio tu chi sì!

'Nchiusa dint'a 'nu mistero
Tu che pienze? Tu che siente?
T'annascunne 'e sentimente,
T'annascunne ogne penziero.
Da che parte sì venuta?
E, dimane, addò jarraje?
Manco chesta!.. sorda e muta
'Na risposta nun m' 'a daje.
Pe' tte mme sò accurdato
Già cu 'a morte
E già 'o demmonio 'e pporte
D' 'o 'nfierno fa arapì.
Pe' tte, pe' tte dannato
Murarraggio
E, intanto, no, nun saccio,
Nun saccio tu chi sì!

Who are you who, for a long time,
I see in a crowd of people?
Beautiful like Madonna
Meanwhile you do so much evil!
Who are you that even when
I see you in my dream, alone,
You don't say a word
And have no mercy on me?
Because of you I lose my life
And there's no salvation for me,
Because of you I still live
But feel like I'm dying.
Because of you one day
I'll die
But, for now, no, I don't know,
I don't know who you are!

Who are you, like a rose
That has no smell and full of thorns,
You who walk haughtily
Like a queen of queens?
Who are you who spread the light,
Gold and tender light of spring,
You who leave me in the dark
With so unhappy fate?
Because of you
I've become blind
And a ray of sun
I don't see it anymore.
Because of you one day
I'll die
But, for now, no, I don't know,
I don't know who you are!

Shrouded in mystery,
What do you think about? What do you feel?
You hide your feelings,
You hide all your thoughts.
Where did you come from?
Where will you go tomorrow?
Even to this question!.. not listening and silent,
You don't reply me.
Because of you
I already have come to terms with the death
And the demon already opens
The gates of Hell for me.
Because of you, because of you,
Doomed, I'll die
But, for now, no, I don't know,
I don't know who you are!

translated by Natalia Chernega