Canzoniere 349

At every hour I seem to hear
the messenger she sends to me,
and so I change incessantly,
diminished by each passing year
as my reflection turns unclear;
I spurn the way I used to be.
I long to know when I’ll be free
although that moment should be near.
How joyous it will be to fly
from earthbound jails and scatter frail
and mortal tatters from above,
and then to part the gloom and sail
into serene resplendent sky
to see my Lord and my one love!

(translated from the Italian of Petrarch)

A.M. Juster

A.M. Juster's work has appeared in Poetry, The Hudson Review, The Paris Review and the new anthology Christian Poetry in America Since 1940. His eleventh book, a translation of Petrarch's Canzoniere, is due from W.W. Norton in early 2024.

'Canzoniere 349' have 2 comments

  1. February 3, 2023 @ 11:39 am David W. Landrum

    Marvelous translation of a moving poem.


  2. February 3, 2023 @ 2:30 pm Cynthia Erlandson

    This is so beautiful that I just keep reading it over and over again. Lines 10 and 11 are especially exquisite, with their internal rhymes of jails/frail; scatter/tatter.


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