Why endlessly appeal to death's cold ear,
to what end cry before God to make Him
pity me--if I can myself crack these,
wings and gouge out the pain from my strong heart.
Rather than beating on locked doors, open
the one to oblivion, and shut off
all possibility of another
when I can despise my pitiless fate
and hate-filled star. I have tried every
defense, uncovered each path to get out
of this blind prison of relentless grief
uselessly. It only remains to see
if I am yet sane enough to turn crazed
hopeless desire into better deeds.
|An image of the Italian text from Visconti's 1840 edition|
V XXXI:31. From B A1:64:35. See also R LIIII:49. Translations: Roscoe 340; Lefevre-Deumier 44; Therault 183. This begins a series of poems which follow a trajectory of emotion first outlined by William James in his Varieties of Religious Experience. Some of the phases of VC's emotional life, especially that having to do with her sexual passions can be explained by psychoanalysis; however, the tendency and current of her thought leads her to flee to the devotional and religious. Key