Verse > Anthologies > The World’s Best Poetry > Vol. V. Nature
Bliss Carman, et al., eds.  The World’s Best Poetry.
Volume V. Nature.  1904.
VI. Animate Nature
The Ox
Giosuè Carducci (1835–1907)
From the Italian by Frank Sewall

From the “Poesie”

I LOVE thee, pious ox; a gentle feeling
  Of vigor and of peace thou giv’st my heart.
  How solemn, like a monument, thou art!
Over wide fertile fields thy calm gaze stealing,
Unto the yoke with grave contentment kneeling,        5
  To man’s quick work thou dost thy strength impart.
  He shouts and goads, and answering thy smart,
Thou turn’st on him thy patient eyes appealing.
From thy broad nostrils, black and wet, arise
  Thy breath’s soft fumes; and on the still air swells,        10
Like happy hymn, thy lowing’s mellow strain.
In the grave sweetness of thy tranquil eyes
  Of emerald, broad and still reflected dwells
All the divine green silence of the plain.

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