Innocent children, your invincible
strong Captain gone, defenseless abandoned
alone--He willed that you should take His place,
shield Him. Lucky worthwhile blest destiny.
Evil twisted desires--Herod smashed,
murdered tiny tender babies, seeds for
strong plants, firm lovely fruit--before they grew--
but he gave you certainty, a swift death,
eternal life. Ripped from a mother's breast,
her milk taken from you, startled wailing
replaces tortured words, palms, laurels of
paradise replace crowns. Scarcely over,
wings on shoulders appear, darling cupids,
lifted, in life's first moments, to Heaven.
|An image of the Italian text from Visconti's 1840 edition|
From V LXI:221. See also B S1:25:97; MSs: L (Tordi 7v) V2: (Caruso f.26); Valgrisi 25. Translation: Glassford 60. Reference: Matthew 2:13-18. Key