Friday, 19 August 2016

Before the Convent of Yuste, 1556 - August von Platen-Hallermünde

’Tis night, and storms continually roar,
Ye monks of Spain, unbar for me the door.

Here in unbroken quiet let me fare,
Save when the loud bell startles me to prayer.

Make ready for me what your house has meet,
A friar’s habit and a winding-sheet.

A little cell unto my use assign;
More than the half of all this world was mine.

The head that stoops unto the scissors now,
Under the weight of many crowns did bow.

The shoulders on which now the cowl is flung,
On them the ermine of the Caesars hung.

I living now as dead myself behold,
And fall in ruins like this kingdom old.

August von Platen-Hallermünde (1796 - 1835) Germany
An elderly Karl V,
ruler of the Holy Roman Empire
by Titian
Translated by James and Mary Ford
Emperor Charles V abdicated on Feb. 2. 1556, in favour of his son Philip II and retired to a monastery in Spain, where he lived until his death two years later.
Source: Every Day in the Year: A Poetical Epitome of the World’s History

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