To Laura In Death. Sonnet XXII.

A poem by Francesco Petrarca

Come va 'l mondo! or mi diletta e piace.


How goes the world! now please me and delight
What most displeased me: now I see and feel
My trials were vouchsafed me for my weal,
That peace eternal should brief war requite.
O hopes and wishes, ever fond and slight,
In lovers most, which oftener harm than heal!
Worse had she yielded to my warm appeal
Whom Heaven has welcomed from the grave's dark night.
But blind love and my dull mind so misled,
I sought to trespass even by main force
Where to have won my precious soul were dead.
Blessèd be she who shaped mine erring course
To better port, by turns who curb'd and lured
My bold and passionate will where safety was secured.


Alas! this changing world! my present joy
Was once my grief's dark source, and now I feel
My sufferings pass'd were but my soul to heal
Its fearful warfare--peace's soft decoy.
Poor human wishes! Hope, thou fragile toy
To lovers oft! my woe had met its seal,
Had she but hearken'd to my love's appeal,
Who, throned in heaven, hath fled this world's alloy.
My blinded love, and yet more stubborn mind,
Resistless urged me to my bosom's shame,
And where my soul's destruction I had met:
But blessèd she who bade life's current find
A holier course, who still'd my spirit's flame
With gentle hope that soul might triumph yet.


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