Quartier Libre by Jacques Prévert (aka Le Képi) – for two equal voices



Two versions are available – in F and G for high voices and in C and D for low voices.
The video below (in C and D) was performed by the composer.
The poem is by Jacques Prévert (with permission from his estate).
It relates how the soldier took leave, left his army cap in the cage and went out with the bird (of freedom) on his head.

J’ai mis le képi dans la cage
Et je suis sorti avec l’oiseau sur la tête

“Alors, on ne salue plus?”
a demandé le commandant

“Non, non ne salue plus” a répondu l’oiseau

“Ah bon, excusez moi
Je croyais qu’on saluait”
A dit le commandant

“Vous êtes tout excusé,
car tout le monde peut se tromper”

a dit l’oiseau.

[literal translation]
I put my army cap in the cage
and went out with the bird on my head

“Now then, don’t we salute any more?”
asked the commander.

“No we don’t salute any more”
replied the bird.

“Oh, OK, pardon me,
I thought we saluted.”
said the commander.

“You are quite forgiven,
because anyone can make a mistake.”

said the bird.