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BALLATA III

BALLATA III.

Quel foco, ch' io pensai che fosse spento.

HE THOUGHT HIMSELF FREE, BUT FINDS THAT HE IS MORE THAN EVER ENTHRALLED BY LOVE.

That fire for ever which I thought at rest,
Quench'd in the chill blood of my ripen'd years,
Awakes new flames and torment in my breast.
Its sparks were never all, from what I see,
Extinct, but merely slumbering, smoulder'd o'er;
Haply this second error worse may be,
For, by the tears, which I, in torrents, pour,
Grief, through these eyes, distill'd from my heart's core,
Which holds within itself the spark and bait,
Remains not as it was, but grows more great.
What fire, save mine, had not been quench'd and kill'd
Beneath the flood these sad eyes ceaseless shed?
Struggling 'mid opposites—so Love has will'd—
Now here, now there, my vain life must be led,
For in so many ways his snares are spread,
When most I hope him from my heart expell'd
Then most of her fair face its slave I'm held.
Macgregor.

Poem by Francesco Petrarch
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