When I was young, and now when I am old

When I was young, and now when I am old,
then the bright dawn, now darkening twilight,
then innocent, now undeceived, Love retains
its grip over my heart: for a long time

I hoped the pain would abate, but it grows
more intense, dominates as the years pass.
The shadow of his face quiets, atones,
removes the anguish, strengthens desire.

The glimpsed light I imagine consumes me,
it burns, yet sustains and feeds, awakens
the old desire to burn as when young.

The idea of the chivalry that stirred
the world makes this grief in the dark my friend--
avails more than it can ever hurt me.

An image of the Italian text from Visconti's 1840 edition
From V XXXIV:34. See also B A1:27:16; R LXXII:202, and commentary, pp. 202-206. See Dante Purgatorio, Cantos IX, XXIX. Key

Amaro Lagrimar
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