Verse > Anthologies > Samuel Waddington, ed. > The Sonnets of Europe
Samuel Waddington, comp.  The Sonnets of Europe.  1888.
Gentle Severity
By Francesco Petrarca (1304–1374)
Translated by Thomas Wentworth Higginson
Dolci durezze e placide repulse

  GENTLE severity, repulses mild,
Full of chaste love and pity sorrowing;
Graceful rebukes, that had the power to bring
Back to itself a heart by dreams beguiled;
  A soft-toned voice, whose accents undefiled        5
Held sweet restraints, all duty honouring;
The bloom of virtue; purity’s clear spring
To cleanse away base thoughts and passions wild;
  Divinest eyes to make a lover’s bliss,
Whether to bridle in the wayward mind        10
Lest its wild wanderings should the pathway miss,
  Or else its griefs to soothe, its wounds to bind;
This sweet completeness of thy life it is
That saved my soul; no other peace I find.

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