Sunday, January 27, 2008

Homage from Longfellow

A sonnet on the Purgatorio:

With snow-white veil and garments as of flame,

She stands before thee, who so long ago

Filled thy young heart with passion and the woe

From which thy song and all its splendors came;

And while with stern rebuke she speaks thy name,

The ice about thy heart melts as the snow

On mountain heights, and in swift overflow

Comes gushing from thy lips in sobs of shame.

Thou makest full confession; and a gleam,

As of the dawn on some dark forest cast,

Seems on thy lifted forehead to increase;

Lethe and Eunoë -- the remembered dream

And the forgotten sorrow -- bring at last

That perfect pardon which is perfect peace.

One of six sonnets about The Comedy composed by H.W. Longfellow -- he was translating the entire poem at the time.

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