To Laura In Death. Sonnet LXXXVIII.

A poem by Francesco Petrarca

Spirto felice, che sì dolcemente.

BEHOLDING IN FANCY THE SHADE OF LAURA, HE TELLS HER THE LOSS THAT THE WORLD SUSTAINED IN HER DEPARTURE.


Blest spirit, that with beams so sweetly clear
Those eyes didst bend on me, than stars more bright,
And sighs didst breathe, and words which could delight
Despair; and which in fancy still I hear;--
I see thee now, radiant from thy pure sphere
O'er the soft grass, and violet's purple light,
Move, as an angel to my wondering sight;
More present than earth gave thee to appear.
Yet to the Cause Supreme thou art return'd:
And left, here to dissolve, that beauteous veil
In which indulgent Heaven invested thee.
Th' impoverish'd world at thy departure mourn'd:
For love departed, and the sun grew pale,
And death then seem'd our sole felicity.

CAPEL LOFFT.


O blessed Spirit! who those sun-like eyes
So sweetly didst inform and brightly fill,
Who the apt words didst frame and tender sighs
Which in my fond heart have their echo still.
Erewhile I saw thee, glowing with chaste flame,
Thy feet 'mid violets and verdure set,
Moving in angel not in mortal frame,
Life-like and light, before me present yet!
Her, when returning with thy God to dwell,
Thou didst relinquish and that fair veil given
For purpose high by fortune's grace to thee:
Love at thy parting bade the world farewell;
Courtesy died; the sun abandon'd heaven,
And Death himself our best friend 'gan to be.

MACGREGOR.

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