Al cor di zolfo.
A heart of flaming sulphur, flesh of tow,
Bones of dry wood, a soul without a guide
To curb the fiery will, the ruffling pride
Of fierce desires that from the passions flow;
A sightless mind that weak and lame doth go
Mid snares and pitfalls scattered far and wide;--
What wonder if the first chance brand applied
To fuel massed like this should make it glow?
Add beauteous art, which, brought with us from heaven,
Will conquer nature;--so divine a power
Belongs to him who strives with every nerve.
If I was made for art, from childhood given
A prey for burning beauty to devour,
I blame the mistress I was born to serve.