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FOSCOLO, Ugo



Alla sera / To The Night


Maybe because you always have appeared

The image of that fatal rest to me,

O night! You come towards me so dear!

Escorted by the summer clouds with glee

And by the gentle breezes full of cheer,


Or from the snowy air you come sending

That long, uneasy darkness to the world,

O summoned night, upon the earth descending,

The darkest secrets of my heart you hold.


At sight of you my mind begins to wander

To the eternal void beyond the sky;

And all along the wretched time meanders

And with it all my worries; meanwhile I

Stand looking at your peace that calms the torment

Within my raging spirit lying dormant.


-translated by Alexander Shaumyan



A Zacinto

I'll never step ashore and feel your beach

the way I felt it as a barefoot child,

or see you waver in the windy reach

of goddess-bearing sea. You were the island

Venus made with her first smile,

Zakynthos, the moment she was born.

No song embraced your leafy sky,

not even his who sang the fatal storm

and how Ulysses, his misfortunes past

and beautiful with fame, sailed home at last.