Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Waddington, ed. > The Sonnets of Europe
Samuel Waddington, comp.  The Sonnets of Europe.  1888.
Of His Lady’s Old Age (II.)
By Pierre de Ronsard (1524–1585)
Translated by C. Kegan Paul
Another rendering of the same Sonnet

WHEN very old, at eve, while candles flare,
  Chatting and spinning by the fire you sit,
  And, marvelling, you hum the lines I writ,
Say: Ronsard sung me once when I was fair.
Then every serving-maid who slumbers there,        5
  Nodding above her task with drowsy wit,
  Hearing my name, will rouse at sound of it
And bless your name, your deathless praise declare.
A disembodied ghost, I shall have laid
My bones to rest beneath the myrtle shade,        10
  While you, a crone, crouch o’er the embers’ glow,
Mourning my love, and your sublime disdain;
Live, trust me, wait not for to-morrow’s pain,
  But cull to-day life’s roses as they blow.

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