Sweetly, the course of a doomed love affair is charted from innocent romantic dreams through nights of passion, storms and tears , ending in total disillusionment as the object of love changes to alcohol, prostitutes, thoughts of suicide, finally giving him the victory of telling her, "I forgot you already." All the while nature in Brel's Flanders poetically mirrors his inner feelings.
Still open to interpretation is why "tu" (familiar address) and "vous" (formal address) are used in the same sentence. Comments and interpretations are invited. This song was taken from a 1963 album and has been called the Brel song most like a Broadway show tune. It was adapted ( not very accurately) by Mort Shuman and Eric Blau as "I Loved" for Jacques Brel is Alive and Living in Paris.
Thanks once again to philipchek of YouTube and Paris for explanations of the French language and relationships, and for ensuring the accuracy of this translation. See his channel for French translations of songs in English.
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