To Laura In Death. Sonnet XC.

A poem by Francesco Petrarca

Vago augelletto che cantando vai.

THE PLAINTIVE SONG OF A BIRD RECALLS TO HIM HIS OWN KEENER SORROW.


Poor solitary bird, that pour'st thy lay;
Or haply mournest the sweet season gone:
As chilly night and winter hurry on,
And day-light fades and summer flies away;
If as the cares that swell thy little throat
Thou knew'st alike the woes that wound my rest.
Ah, thou wouldst house thee in this kindred breast,
And mix with mine thy melancholy note.
Yet little know I ours are kindred ills:
She still may live the object of thy song:
Not so for me stern death or Heaven wills!
But the sad season, and less grateful hour,
And of past joy and sorrow thoughts that throng
Prompt my full heart this idle lay to pour.

DACRE.


Sweet bird, that singest on thy airy way,
Or else bewailest pleasures that are past;
What time the night draws nigh, and wintry blast;
Leaving behind each merry month, and day;
Oh, couldst thou, as thine own, my state survey,
With the same gloom of misery o'ercast;
Unto my bosom thou mightst surely haste
And, by partaking, my sad griefs allay.
Yet would thy share of woe not equal mine,
Since the loved mate thou weep'st doth haply live,
While death, and heaven, me of my fair deprive:
But hours less gay, the season's drear decline;
With thoughts on many a sad, and pleasant year,
Tempt me to ask thy piteous presence here.

NOTT.

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