Petrarch Laura Francesco Petrarch and Laura For a woman he would never know
For a woman he could never have
He should change the world forever
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Petrarch:The Canzoniere

Translated by: A.S.Kline
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Information on the sonnet is available here.
Looking for an analysis of a specific poem from the Canzoniere?
Read I go thinking an analysis of poem 264 by Holly Barbaccia.


Listen to this poem (mp3) recited in Italian by Moro Silo

ITALIAN ENGLISH
La vita fugge, et non s'arresta una hora,
et la morte vien dietro a gran giornate,
et le cose presenti et le passate
mi dnno guerra, et le future anchora;

e 'l rimembrare et l'aspettar m'accora,
or quinci or quindi, s che 'n veritate,
se non ch'i' di me stesso pietate,
i' sarei gi di questi penser' fra.

Tornami avanti, s'alcun dolce mai
ebbe 'l cor tristo; et poi da l'altra parte
veggio al mio navigar turbati i vnti;

veggio fortuna in porto, et stanco omai
il mio nocchier, et rotte arbore et sarte,
e i lumi bei che mirar soglio, spenti.

Life flies, and never stays an hour,
and death comes on behind with its dark day,
and present things and past things
embattle me, and future things as well:

and remembrance and expectation grip my heart,
now on this side, now on that, so that in truth,
if I did not take pity on myself,
I would have freed myself already from all thought.

A sweetness that the sad heart knew
returns to me: yet from another quarter
I see the storm-winds rattling my sails:

I see no chance of harbour, and my helmsman
is weary now, and my masts and ropes are broken,
and the beautiful stars, I used to gaze on, quenched.


© Copyright 1999-2006
Peter Sadlon
Updated Sept 10th 2007

A Merentha Entertainment Project


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