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untitled poem

Arnaut Daniel


Love and joy, and time and place
return me to my usual wits
from the yoke I had the other year,
when I went hunting hares with oxen;
now Iím better, Love-wise and worse,
since I love well, and for that I call myself lucky;
but still is my name Not-Loved
if Love doesnít win her stark heart, and my pleads.


He who loses all his wealth together,
ought to look for a rich lord
to restore his loss and harm,
since a poor one wouldnít be worth to him a minnow:
for that I have chosen her
to whom my heart nor my eyes have ever been closed,
and I vow, Love, if you conquer her for me,
peace forever with all the others.


Heís worth little a man wanting joy;
I know it well, Iíve had mine spoiled,
since for an excess of toil
the pain of which wonít leave my heart;
and if sadness doesnít leave as joy did
soon shall have me my relatives insane;
but such is the one that has turned my heart
that I would die old, loving her.


I donít know man so firm in God,
hermit nor monk nor cleric,
as I am in her of whom I sing,
and thatíll be proved ere new year comes;
I am more faithful to her than to half of myself,
and so I would be if I were king or duke:
so pure it is my heart in her
that Iíd be blind ere I long for another one.


For that of whom Iíve so feared and doubted
I now grow better and loftier,
since an adage I have heard once
tells me it thunders as long as it rains;
albeit I fail five years or six,
how gladly, when my hairíll be hoary,
Iíll enjoy that for which I suffer,
as loving and pleading the scornful heart is sweetened.


Out of long sighing and grievous wailing
can take me the one I uplift myself for
since now for a seemly visage only
I have stirred a wholly new song.
I walk up the slope and I donít complain,
since gently this mountain moves me to think:
Go up, heart! It is well you suffer:
go on as long as you donít fail in the one you brood.


Gold shall be viler than iron
before Arnaut leaves loving the one heís secretly devoted to.

Arnaut Daniel (12th Century)



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