Nel teatro del mondo.
The world's a theatre: age after age,
Souls masked and muffled in their fleshly gear
Before the supreme audience appear,
As Nature, God's own Art, appoints the stage.
Each plays the part that is his heritage;
From choir to choir they pass, from sphere to sphere,
And deck themselves with joy or sorry cheer,
As Fate the comic playwright fills the page.
None do or suffer, be they cursed or blest,
Aught otherwise than the great Wisdom wrote
To gladden each and all who gave Him mirth,
When we at last to sea or air or earth
Yielding these masks that weal or woe denote,
In God shall see who spoke and acted best.