To Vittoria Colonna. A Matchless Courtesy.

A poem by Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni

Felice spirto.


Blest spirit, who with loving tenderness
Quickenest my heart so old and near to die,
Who mid thy joys on me dost bend an eye
Though many nobler men around thee press!
As thou wert erewhile wont my sight to bless,
So to console my mind thou now dost fly;
Hope therefore stills the pangs of memory,
Which coupled with desire my soul distress.
So finding in thee grace to plead for me--
Thy thoughts for me sunk in so sad a case--
He who now writes, returns thee thanks for these.
Lo, it were foul and monstrous usury
To send thee ugliest paintings in the place
Of thy fair spirit's living phantasies.

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