Verse > Anthologies > Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed. > Poems of Places > Italy
Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, ed.  Poems of Places: An Anthology in 31 Volumes.
Italy: Vols. XI–XIII.  1876–79.
To Scipio Gonzaga
Torquato Tasso (1544–1595)
Translated by Richard Henry Wilde

SURE Pity, Scipio, on earth has fled
From royal breasts to seek abode in heaven;
For if she were not banished, scorned, or dead,
Would not some ear to my complaints be given?
Is noble faith at pleasure to be riven,        5
Though freely pledged that I had naught to dread,
And I by endless outrage to be driven
To worse than death,—the deathlike life I ’ve led?
For this is of the quick a grave; and here
Am I, a living, breathing corpse interred,        10
To go not forth, till prisoned in my bier;
O earth! O heaven! if love and truth are heard,
Or honor, fame, and virtue worth a tear,
Let not my prayers be fruitless or deferred!

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