When Love induced me to play that hard game Quando Amor mi condusse al duro gioco
When Love induced me to play that hard game
I hoped never to quit, his physic for
this my wild, nay, savage sickness, was hope,
which made me content to live in fire.

Distance, time, place, nothing ever lessened
the intensity of my real passion,
each torment seemed trivial to me
since my mind was wholly led on by hope.

I made myself believe in happiness,
that I'd gather the sweet fruits of patience,
but, ah, hope is dying, unlucky me.

Wretched my heart beats on scorched maimed,
since being alive I burn and if I may speak truth,
hope has been forever taken from me.

Quando Amor me condusse a quel dur gioco,
dal qual partirmi, ahimè! non mai più spero,
donò per medicina al mal mio fero
speranza, ond'io vivea contenta in foco;

talché distanza mai, tempo, né loco
ebber forza scemar l'ardor mio vero,
che speme sol guidava il mio pensero,
talch'ogni gran martir mi parea poco.

Ed or ch'io mi credea viver felice,
e coglier di speranza il dolce frutto
passata è la speranza, ahimè! infelice,

e 'l misero mio cor, arso e distrutto,
ardendo vive, e più, se 'l ver dir lice,
d'ogni ben privo e di speranza in tutto.


Rizzardi 1:55; Chiapetti 37:45; 1995 Bullock 9:65-66. For Key see A Note on the Italian texts


This has often been followed with "Or passata è la speranza" (e.g., Courten, pp. 143-44). Costa was the first to stress that both are pre-Correggio poems. Bullock agrees; see 1995 Bullock, pp. 65-66n.
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