Sunday, 17 February 2019

Self Recollection - Vincenzo da Filicaja

In buoyant days of young self-confidence
And credulous trust in counsels that misled,
This mind, the sport of passion, lov'd to tread
Each tempting path which fascinates the sense.

The labyrinth charm'd me: nor emerg'd I thence
Till snows of age began these brows to o'erspread;
Then new constraint my spirit visited,
Chang'd from that erring self, and youth's offence.

And still, as years steal on, the more are sought.
Within my sorrowing heart, the virtues lost;
On this great aim now dwells my earnest thought.

The musings which false joys could once exhaust.
Concentring in the invisible; and taught
This to revolve till death's cold stream be cross'd.

Vincenzo da Filicaja (1642 - 1707) Italy
Translated by John Sheppard
Source: The Foreign Sacred Lyre: Metrical Versions of Religious Poetry from the German, French, and Italian, by John Sheppard, Jackson & Walford, 1857

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