God's emperor, wise, wary, our link with
Christ, shepherd, father, on our behalf rouse
your invincible armies, one ray of
light from you illumines and drives the blind
from your church, Christ's bride and our real mother;
your light will renew and again give birth
to works and deeds whose age-old and primal
beauty are born of loving compassion.
Your scattered, frightened flock seeks food but finds,
feeds on bitter grass; and when it turns back
it hears inside the gates the loud clangor
of arms. And if one, allowed by you, scorns,
holds war as vile, prefers peace, this world drains
each skill, all cunning to rob her of it.
|An image of the Italian text from Visconti's 1840 edition|
From V CXXXVI:296. See also B S1:91:130; no MSs; Valgrisi 92. A sonnet to a Pope, probably Clement VII (Giulio de' Medici), just after the Sack of Rome in 1527. Visconti places this one just before VC's sonnet to Peter "Veggio d'alga e di fango omai si carca". Key