Sonnet CCXXIII.

A poem by Francesco Petrarca

Qual donna attende a gloriosa fama.

THE EYES OF LAURA ARE THE SCHOOL OF VIRTUE.


Feels any fair the glorious wish to gain
Of sense, of worth, of courtesy, the praise?
On those bright eyes attentive let her gaze
Of her miscall'd my love, but sure my foe.
Honour to gain, with love of God to glow,
Virtue more bright how native grace displays,
May there be learn'd; and by what surest ways
To heaven, that for her coming pants, to go.
The converse sweet, beyond what poets write,
Is there; the winning silence, and the meek
And saint-like manners man would paint in vain.
The matchless beauty, dazzling to the sight,
Can ne'er be learn'd; for bootless 'twere to seek
By art, what by kind chance alone we gain.

ANON., OX., 1795.

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