Thursday, December 21, 2006

'Quando io movo i sospiri a chiamar voi'

When I utter sighs, in calling out to you,
With the name that Love wrote on my heart,

The sound of its first sweet accents begin

To be heard within the word laudable.
Your regal state, that I next encounter,
Doubles my power for the high attempt;
But: ‘tacit’, the ending cries, ‘since to do her honour
Is for other men’s shoulders, not for yours’.
So, whenever one calls out to you,
The voice itself teaches us to laud, revere,
You, O, lady worthy of all reverence and honour:
Except perhaps that Apollo is disdainful
That mortal tongue can be so presumptuous

As to speak of his eternally green branches.

- Petrarch (The Canzoniere, pm. 5)

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