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Lament XVII → ← Lament XV

Spis treści

      Jan KochanowskiLamentsLament XVItłum. Dorothea Prall

      Misfortune hath constrainèd me
      To leave the lute and poetry,
      Nor can I from their easing borrow
      Sleep for my sorrow.
      Do I see true, or hath a dream
      Flown forth from ivory gates to gleam
      In phantom gold, before forsaking
      Its poor cheat, waking?
      Oh, mad, mistaken humankind,
      'Tis easy triumph for the mind
      While yet no ill adventure strikes us
      And naught mislikes us.
      In plenty we praise poverty,
      'Mid pleasures we hold grief to be
      (And even death, ere it shall stifle
      Our breath) a trifle.
      But when the grudging spinner scants
      Her thread and fate no surcease grants
      From grief most deep and need most wearing,
      Less calm our bearing.
      Ah, Tully[1], thou didst flee from Rome
      With weeping, who didst say his home
      The wise man found in any station,
      In any nation.
      And why dost mourn thy daughter so
      When thou hast said the only woe
      That man need dread is base dishonor ? —
      Why sorrow on her?
      Death, thou hast said, can terrify
      The godless man alone. Then why
      So loth, the pay for boldness giving,
      To leave off living?
      Thy words, that have persuaded men,
      Persuade not thee, angelic pen;
      Disaster findeth thy defenses,
      Like mine, pretenses.
      Soft stone is man: he takes the lines
      That Fortune's cutting tool designs.
      To press the wounds wherewith she graves us,
      Racks us or saves us?
      Time, father of forgetfulness
      So longed for now in my distress,
      Since wisdom nor the saints can steel me,
      Oh, do thou heal me!



      Tully — Marcus Tullius Cicero (106 BC–43 BC), Roman politician, philosopher, renowned orator and writer. [przypis edytorski]

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