Music: Alfredo De Angelis – Lyrics: José Rótulo (1945)
The verses of this love song, full of melancholy and revery, create an atmosphere where it is difficult to distinguish between dream and reality.
“Gone is your soft laughter. Gone, my daydreams, dead or dying, like a bunch of faded blooms.”
Did the poet really meet this flower girl, this “fair-haired ivory princess” as he describes her, or was it all just daydreams?…
“I walk the streets of Paris and recall your flower girl’s call. Once ago, one April’s day.”
The myth of Paris is strongly present in tango songs and represents the dream of a generation of immigrants to return to Europe, rich and successful. For most immigrants however, this dream remained just that and the mention of walking the streets of Paris contributes to casting doubts as to whether the love story happened or, like the trip to Paris, was imagined too.
The light-hearted music, much more up-beat than most tango songs also makes it feel like this flower girl or this love was all imagined by the poet. The melancholy and even bitterness sometimes found in tango love songs is definitely missing from Pregonera.
Pregonera has been translated by Tanguito, Argentine Tango Academy in London, with the help of a fantastic milonguera friend. If you have any comment or have other interpretations of the lyrics, please feel free to share your opinion, we’d love to hear what you think.
Princesita rubia de marfil
Fair-haired ivory princess
|Una rosa roja para usted,
roja como el ansia de querer,
rosas y claveles blancos,
blancos de ilusión
y sigue la princesa su pregón.
|I offer you a red rose,
Red as love’s yearning
And carnations, white as hope,
White as castles in the sky,
And I hear still the flower girl’s cry.
|Un cariño y un clavel
para el ojal, para el querer.
El clavel es de ilusión,
mi corazón rojo punzó.
Y la tarde fue muriendo,
y el pregón me va siguiendo.
Un cariñito y un clavel,
sólo el clavel, lo que quedó.
|A caress and a carnation
For my lapel, to ease my yearning
My carnation, made of dreams,
My emotions, scarlet flames
And in the late afternoon’s waning,
I hear the flower girl’s call still trailing
A light caress and a carnation –
A blossom’s all that did remain.
|Princesita rubia de marfil,
dónde fue tu risa tan sutil,
junto con tus flores muertas
muere mi ilusión.
Y escucho el eco tenue de tu voz.
Es como un susurro sin cesar,
que va despertando mi ansiedad,
es mi fantasía loca
que vuelve a soñar.
De nuevo soy feliz con tu cantar.
|Fair-haired ivory princess
Gone is your soft laughter
Gone, my daydreams, dead or dying
Like a bunch of faded blooms.
But I hear still the faint echo of your voice
The ceaseless murmur lures my senses
It is just my foolish fancy,
Once again dreaming
Once again, finding joy in your singing.