In Memory of Aurelio Saffi

A poem by Algernon Charles Swinburne

Beloved above all nations, land adored,
Sovereign in spirit and charm, by song and sword,
Sovereign whose life is love, whose name is light,
Italia, queen that hast the sun for lord,
Bride that hast heaven for bridegroom, how should night
Veil or withhold from faith's and memory's sight
A man beloved and crowned of thee and fame,
Hide for an hour his name's memorial might?
Thy sons may never speak or hear the name
Saffi, and feel not love's regenerate flame
Thrill all the quickening heart with faith and pride
In one whose life makes death and life the same.
They die indeed whose souls before them died:
Not he, for whom death flung life's portal wide,
Who stands where Dante's soul in vision came,
In Dante's presence, by Mazzini's side.

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