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C.D. Warner, et al., comp.  The Library of the World’s Best Literature.
An Anthology in Thirty Volumes.  1917.
 
In a Gothic Church
By Giosuè Carducci (1835–1907)
 
From the ‘Poesie’: Translation of Frank Sewall

THEY rise aloft, marching in awful file,
The polished shafts immense of marble gray,
And in the sacred darkness seem to be
        An army of giants
 
Who wage a war with the invisible;        5
The silent arches soar and spring apart
In distant flight, then re-embrace again
        And droop on high.
 
So in the discord of unhappy men,
From out their barbarous tumult there go up        10
To God the sighs of solitary souls
        In Him united.
 
Of you I ask no God, ye marble shafts,
Ye airy vaults! I tremble—but I watch
To hear a dainty well-known footstep waken        15
        The solemn echoes.
 
’Tis Lidia, and she turns, and slowly turning,
Her tresses full of light reveal themselves,
And love is shining from a pale shy face
        Behind the veil.        20
 
 
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