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Tra quantunque leggiadre donne e belle.
ALL NATURE WOULD BE IN DARKNESS WERE SHE, ITS SUN, TO PERISH.
Where'er she moves, whatever dames among,
Beauteous or graceful, matchless she below.
With her fair face she makes all others show
Dim, as the day's bright orb night's starry throng.
And Love still whispers, with prophetic tongue,—
"Long as on earth is seen that glittering brow,
Shall life have charms: but she shall cease to glow
And with her all my power shall fleet along,
Should Nature from the skies their twin-lights wrest;
Hush every breeze, each herb and flower destroy;
Strip man of reason—speech; from Ocean's breast
His tides, his tenants chase—such, earth's annoy;
Yea, still more darken'd were it and unblest,
Had she, thy Laura, closed her eyes to love and joy.
Whene'er amidst the damsels, blooming bright,
She shows herself, whose like was never made,
At her approach all other beauties fade,
As at morn's orient glow the gems of night.
Love seems to whisper,—"While to mortal sight
Her graces shall on earth be yet display'd,
Life shall be blest; 'till soon with her decay'd,
The virtues, and my reign shall sink outright.
[Pg 197]Of moon and sun, should nature rob the sky,
The air of winds, the earth of herbs and leaves,
Mankind of speech and intellectual eye,
The ocean's bed of fish, and dancing waves;
Even so shall all things dark and lonely lye,
When of her beauty Death the world bereaves!
Top Francesco Petrarch Poems
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